Lesson Plan for 21st Century Learning

10 Jun

Subject/Content Area: Elementary Spanish

Grade Level: 3rd grade

Unit of Study: Geographical locations of Spanish-speaking countries

Lesson Outcome: Students will be able to create a Google Presentation highlighting interesting information about their country of study. Students will also collaborate with one another, giving feedback on each other’s work where appropriate.

Resources/Materials: 1. Computer Lab and/or Chromebooks 2. Access to School’s World Book Online account (Internet) 3. Google Maps 4. Google Apps accounts (for online collaboration)

Lesson Procedure: Prior to this lesson, students will have already researched interesting information on their country of study. In this lesson the students will design and create a Google Presentation together in their groups that captivates the peer audience. They will be challenged to play with as many resources (Google Maps, Wikipedia, Google Images, Animoto, etc.) as possible to show their expertise on their country of study. Each student will be responsible for his/her own “slide” in the presentation and both give and receive constructive feedback on creativity, appearance, and how he/she presents the information.

Assessment: Students will receive a rubric that measures: 1. Use of technology on the required slide and its sources, 2. Evidence of thoughtful and constructive feedback, 3. Evidence of working with feedback from peers, and 4. Completion of slide

Lesson Rationale

Currently, my lessons last twenty minutes per class each day to allow me to teach a greater variety of age levels more often. I have found that with even with a few lessons that do not necessarily integrate technology the time frame is a bit constraining. In reality, I think the lesson above will need to be spread among 3-4 classes to receive the full benefit of the learning outcome. I believe this lesson and its overarching unit is fitting for the 21st century because it not only embraces the value of the Internet and the information within it, but it also encourages students to collaborate with one another building a sense of community and placing value on their learning (Bransford, Brown and Cocking, 2000, p. 25). I teach my students Spanish, but where does it come from? The unit addresses the answer to that question by allowing students to use resources like Google Maps and later make that information useful for their peers via Google Presentations using their Google Apps accounts. According to Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown (2011) students must “learn that play is how people generate new understanding” (pp. 91-99).  Once the students have accessed their information for presenting (accomplished in previous lessons), they will collaborate with one another within the Google Presentations format and “play” with their slide using whatever creative applications that can like Animoto to make their slide appealing to the audience. Not only does this lesson allow for the students to “play” with their learning, but it also fits the 21st century concept of community building. According to Renée Hobbs (2011) creating and reflecting are two of five “communication competencies as fundamental literacy practices that are now part of learning across all subject areas” (p.12). The lesson provides opportunity to “create” by allowing students to fully explore their creativity presenting project information in a way that impacts their intended audience. Students will receive ample time to reflect, especially when giving each other feedback, resulting in the challenge to respond respectfully and thoughtfully within their groups and build their nuclear community. Not only will students offer feedback within the project framework, but they will also be equipped with a new understanding of where their neighbor down the street may have come from, offering a springboard into a possible new relationship with someone from a different cultural background and creating an even larger community.

 References:

Bransford, J.D., Brown , A.L., & Cocking, R.R. (Eds.). (2000). How people learn: Brain, mind, experience, and school. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press.

Hobbs, R. (2011). Digital and media literacy: Connecting culture and classroom. Thousand, Oaks, CA: Corwin/Sage.

Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change. Lexington, Ky: CreateSpace?.

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