Focus On: Regions and People of the Western Hemisphere



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Fifth Grade Social Studies Units

Focus On:

Regions and People of the Western Hemisphere


Unit 1: An Introduction to Geography

August-September

Enduring Understandings:

  • Geography helps define regions in the Western Hemisphere

As people face environmental and political problems, they seek answers to free themselves from these barriers. In an attempt to better their lives or to reduce their problems, people change the land, create dams, design buildings, etc.

Essential Questions:

Why is knowing “where” important?

How does the geography of a region influence its people?

How does where you live influence how you live?






Content Statement

Expectations for Learning

Resources/Instructional Strategies

  1. Globes and other geographic tools can be used to gather, process and report information about people, places and environments. Cartographers decide which information to include on maps



  1. Latitude and longitude can be used to make observations about location and generalizations about climate

  1. Regions can be determined using various criteria (e.g. landform, climate, population, cultural and economic)

  • Landform refers to the shape, form or nature of physical features of earth’s surface (e.g. plains, hills, plateaus, mountains)

  • Climate includes long-term trends in weather elements and atmospheric conditions (e.g. average temp/rainfall)

  • Population includes data about the people who live in a selected area (e.g. population density, birth rates)

  • Culture is the learned behavior of people, including belief systems and languages

  • Economics refers to the set of principles by which a society decides and organizes the ownership, allocation and use of resources.

  1. Variations among physical environments within the Western Hemisphere influence human activities. Human activities alter the physical environment




Geography

  1. Use appropriate maps, globes and geographic tools to gather, process and report information about people, places and environments
    National Atlas Map Maker Tool http://www.nationaatlas.gov/mapmaker



  1. Use location to make generalizations about climate (Vocabulary to Know: longitude, latitude, location, climate)
    Find Your Latitude: http://pbs.org/wgbh/nova/longitude/find.html




  1. Identify and describe regions within the Western Hemisphere using criteria related to landforms, climate, population, culture and resources
    National Geographic: “Regions” http://www.nationalgeographic.com/xpeditions/




  1. Explain how variations among physical environments in the Western Hemisphere influence human activities.

Explain how human activities have altered the physical environments of the Western Hemisphere.


Lessons:

IMS Lesson: Absolute Location

IMS Lesson: Defining Regions and Regional Diary

  • Houghton Mifflin-Chapter One, Unit Two (only appropriate pages)

  • Create large map of the Western Hemisphere. Add in features throughout unit and throughout year-long study

  • Draw major physical characteristics on a map. Then compare and contrast this map with a population map and draw conclusions.

(4) Research regions, draw maps and Create questions for classmates to complete using a given map or maps (e.g.. physical features, population density, economic activity, political, climate) fire maps for insurance, census maps, zoning maps, etc.)

(5) Research and compare the climates of two different cities with different latitudes. Have students draw conclusions about why climates differ at different latitudes. Discuss distance north and south of the equator.


(5) Use the game “Battleship” to familiarize students with the use of coordinates on a grid.

(6) Use a jigsaw approach to have students research and share information on regions in the Western Hemisphere. Group students by criteria including landform, climate, population, culture and economics. Have them research the criteria and use those criteria to divide the Western Hemisphere, or a portion of it, into regions based on that criterion. Regroup students to share their maps and compare how the regions have different boundaries based on the criteria used.

(6) Working in small groups, have students create one of the three different types of maps (general reference, thematic or navigational maps) to characterize a region.
(7) Create a cause and effect chart showing how human activities have influenced or could influence the physical environment.

(7) Erie Canal: www.eriecanal.org



Other Websites:
http://academic.brooklyn.cuny.edu/geology/leveson/core/linksa/longlat.html

Hands-On Geography, Nystrom, US Desk Maps, Lessons 11-15, 16-20

Gallery 1: The World in Spatial Terms (search for ‘expedition hall” www.nationalgeographic.com

A good resource for ALL units: www.smarttech.com












Unit 2: Brief Introduction to Systems of Government

October


Enduring Understandings:

  • Knowledge of the roles of citizens and government enables individuals and groups who are in conflict to create change by working within the system of government.

  • Humans form government to meet their needs

Essential Questions:

  1. What societal values and principles are revealed through the rights of its people?

  2. What does “freedom” mean?

3. How do you decide if a government is “good/bad” or “right/wrong”?




Content Statement

Expectations for Learning

Resources/Instructional Strategies

  1. Individuals can better understand public issues by gathering and interpreting information from multiple sources. Data can be displayed graphically to effectively and efficiently communication information (tables, graphs, line/bar graphs, charts or digital images)

  1. Democracies, dictatorships and monarchies are categories for understanding the relationship between those in power or authority and citizens




Government

11. Use multiple sources and appropriate communication tools to locate, investigate, organize and communicate information on a public issue (almanacs, maps, trade books, periodicals, newspapers, photographs and digital resources)


12: Explain the relationship between those in power and individual citizens in a democracy, a dictatorship and a monarchy

*Use knowledge of types of governments when studying the civilizations throughout the year.

Activities:

  • IMS Lesson: Declaration of Independence

IMS Lesson: First Amendment Right

IMS Lesson: How to Become An American

(11) Students can be assigned to research and present opposing points of view on a public issue, using technology to display their findings graphically. Public issues can be related to economics topics


Kids’s Zone (graphing tutorial) http://nces.ed.gov/nceskids/createagraph
(12) Have students use a graphic organizer comparing government categories. Students should describe the relationship between those in power and citizens, and then provide examples of each type of government.

(12) www.cia.gov Use the CIA’s World Factbook to access information on world governments





Unit 3: Early Indian Civilization (Maya, Inca, Aztec, Mississippian)

October –December


Enduring Understanding

Understanding the past helps us understand the present and predict the future



Essential Questions:
1.
How have ideas and events from the past shaped the Western Hemisphere today?
2. How does a “civilization” develop?





Content Statement

Expectations for Learning

Resources/Instructional Strategies

  1. Multiple-tier timelines can be used to show relationships among events and places

  2. Early Indian civilizations (Maya, Inca, Aztec, Mississippian) existed in the Western Hemisphere prior to the arrival of Europeans. These civilizations had developed unique governments, social structures, religions, technologies, and agricultural practices and products.




  1. European exploration and colonization had lasting effects which can be used to understand the Western Hemisphere today.


Geography

7. Variations among physical environments within the Western Hemisphere influence human activities. Human activities alter the physical environment

9. Political, environmental, social and economic factors cause people, products and ideas to move from place to place in the Western Hemisphere today.
10. The Western Hemisphere is culturally diverse due to American Indians, European, Asian and African influences and interactions, as evidenced by artistic expression, language, religion and food
Economics:

15. The availability of productive resources (i.e. human resources, capital goods and natural resources) promotes specialization that leads to trade



History

  1. Construct a multiple-tier timeline and analyze the relationships among events.
    Thinkport Tool: Creating a timeline: http://timeline.thinkport.org




  1. Compare characteristics of early Indian civilizations (governments, social structures, religions, technologies and agricultural practices and products

3. Describe lasting effects of European exploration and colonization on the cultural practices and products of the Western Hemisphere
Geography

7: Explain how variations among physical environments in the Western Hemisphere influence human activities.

Explain how human activities have altered the physical environments of the Western Hemisphere.

9. Explain political, environmental, social and economic factors that cause the movement of people, products and ideas in the Western Hemisphere


10. Describe the cultural diversity of the Western Hemisphere as evidenced by artistic expression, language, religion and food

Economics

15. Explain how the availability of productive resources in a specific region promotes specialization and results in trade



Economics Academy 101: htt://www.westernreservepublicmedia.org/economics/index.htm

Lessons:

IMS Lessons: Creating and Analyzing Time Lines, Welcome to America

(1) When introducing multiple-tier timelines, have students create a multiple-tier timeline covering their life since their birth that includes events that occurred at the local, state and national levels. Have students identify relationships among local, state and national events and their lives.
(1) Have students use biographies of famous people to create multiple-tier timelines that compare events in the biography with world events. Challenge students to think about how world events may have impacted or been impacted by the actions of the famous people read about.
(2) Have groups of students research each of the early Indian civilizations including government systems, social structures, religion, technologies and agriculture practices and product. Groups can share their learning by creating one of the following: a 2-4 minute infomercial of that civilization; a museum exhibit of their civilization. Museum exhibits might be physical (posters, illustrations, models, etc.) or virtual using electronic media tools (slide show, globster or other online format)

(2) Use a chart/graphic organizer to compare the unique characteristics of the four civilizations. Identify and discuss similarities and differences between characteristics of civilizations.


(3) Have students create scrapbooks (either paper or electronic) documenting lasting effects of European colonization in the Western Hemisphere (e.g. images of architecture; maps with place names, descriptions of governments, festival, celebrations, holidays, traditional foods)

Lesson Plans on Early Civilizations

Civilization in the Western Hemisphere
Group Work/Project Based Learning
Maya: A simulation of Mayan Civilization during the Seventh Century: www.interact-simulations.com
PBS: Lost King of the Maya

  • http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/maya/


Ancient Maya: Knowledge Through Art

  • http://www.pbs.org/newshour/extra/teachers/lessonplans/art/maya_6-07.html


Couriers of the Inca Empire: Getting Your Message Across

  • http://edsitement.neh.gov/lesson-plan/couriers-inca-empire-getting-your-message-across


Inca and Aztec Institutions Compared

http://faculty.smu.edu/rKemper/cf_3333/cf_3333_fall_2005_covey_Inca_Aztec.htm
The Aztecs – Mighty Warriors of Mexico

http://edsitement.neh.gov/lesson-plan/aztecs-mdash-mighty-warriors-mexico
Aztec Find a Home: The Eagle Has Landed

http://edsitement.neh.gov/lesson-plan/aztecs-find-home-eagle-has-landed
(7) Create a cause and effect chart showing how human activities have influenced or could influence the physical environment.

(7) Use a graphic organizer to compare how the physical environment influenced human activities in the American Indian culture groups.

(7) Research and report on how and why physical environments influenced early farming methods

(8) Have students create a map showing different regions of American Indian cultural groups. Include geographic features (e.g. desert, mountains, bodies of water, plains) Have students create a color coded key to identify cultural regions

(8) Assign groups of students a cultural group to research and present to the class. Research projects could include the creation of artifacts (as appropriate), illustrations, dioramas, or creative writing pieces that represent the geographic regions and cultural differences. Students can present their learning to the audience (peers, family, younger students) through slide shows, posters, performances, or other appropriate method.
(15) To introduce new vocabulary related to productive resources, provide students with objects or pictues and have them categorize whether each is a human resource, capital good or natural resource. Connect to specialization by brainstorming products that could be made with each objects. Discuss what products might be traded.
Houghton Mifflin, pages 110-115







Unit 4: American Indians/European Exploration and Influence on Regions
January-March

Enduring Understanding

Understanding the past helps us understand the present and predict the future



Essential Questions:

How have ideas and events from the past shaped the Western Hemisphere today?

What makes a cultural group? How do you know one group from another?

How does the environment influence our lives?

How do our lives influence the environment?





Content Statement

Expectations for Learning

Resources/Instructional Strategies

1. Multiple-tier timelines can be used to show relationships among events and places

3. European exploration and colonization had lasting effects which can be used to understand the Western Hemisphere today.

Geography
7. Variations among physical environments within the Western Hemisphere influence human activities. Human activities alter the physical environment

8. American Indians developed unique cultures with many different ways of life. American Indian tribes and nations can be classified into cultural groups based on geographic and cultural similarities.


9. Political, environmental, social and economic factors cause people, products and ideas to move from place to place in the Western Hemisphere today.


10: The Western Hemisphere is culturally diverse due to American Indian, European, Asian and African influences and interactions, as evidenced by artistic expression, language, religion and food



Government

11. Individuals can better understand public issues by gathering and interpreting information from multiple sources. Data can be displayed graphically to effectively and efficiently communicate information

12, Democracies, dictatorships and monarchies are categories for understanding the relationship between those in power or authority and citizens


History
1. Construct a multiple-tier timeline and analyze the relationships among events.
3. Describe lasting effects of European exploration and colonization on the cultural practices and products of the Western Hemisphere
Geography
7: Explain how variations among physical environments in the Western Hemisphere influence human activities.

Explain how human activities have altered the physical environments of the Western Hemisphere.


8. Make generalizations about the cultural ways of life among American Indian cultural groups in North and South America

NOTE: Teachers may select tribes and nations for use as examples for students as they study the geographic and cultural similarities of each cultural group.

The cultural groups of Canada and the United States are (1) the Arctic: (2) the Subarctic; (3) the Northeast, often called the Eastern Woodlands; (4) the Southeast; (5) the Plains; (6) the Northwest Coast; (7) California; (8) the Great Basin; (9) the Plateau; and (10) the Southwest.

Those of Latin America are (1) Middle America; (2) the Caribbean; (3) the Andes; (4) the Tropical Forest; (5) the South American Marginal Regions




  1. Explain political, environmental, social and economic factors that cause the movement of people, products and ideas in the Western Hemisphere.



  1. Describe the cultural diversity of the Western Hemisphere as evidenced by artistic expression, language, religion and food


Government

  1. Use multiple sources and appropriate communication tools to locate, investigate, organize and communicate information on a public issue
    Kids” Zone: Tutorial for different graphs and charts http://nces.ed.gov/nceskids/createagraph/




  1. Explain the relationship between those in power and individual citizens in a democracy, a dictatorship and a monarchy



Lessons:

Houghton Mifflin: Pages 118-139

(1) When introducing multiple-tier timelines, have students create a multiple-tier timeline covering their life since their birth that includes events that occurred at the local, state and national levels. Have students identify relationships among local, state and national events and their lives.


(1) Have students use biographies of famous people to create multiple-tier timelines that compare events in the biography with world events. Challenge students to think about how world events may have impacted or been impacted by the actions of the famous people read about.

(3) Create a living history museum where students dress as European explorer or early colonists and describe how their country influenced and contributed to the culture, language and economy of the western hemisphere today.


(3) Have students create scrapbooks documenting lasting effects of European colonization in the Western Hemisphere. Examples: images of architecture, maps with place names; descriptions of governments; festival, celebrations, holidays or traditional foods.
(7) Create a cause and effect chart showing how human activities have influenced or could influence the physical environment. Students could predict ways in which current human activities might affect the physical environment in the future. For example: Urbanization = loss of animal habitats, pollution; Dam construction=loss of farmland, disruption of ecosystems, prevention of flood, power generation

(7) Use a graphic organizer to compare how the physical environment influenced human activities in the American Indian cultural groups (connecting to content statement 8). Students can work together to research information about assigned cultural groups and compare how physical environments have impacted the cultures including shelter, transportation and agricultural practices.


(7) Have students research and report on how and why physical environments influenced early farming methods such as: Slash and burn; Terrace farming; Chinampas; and Kikes, dams and canals. Students could explain why these methods were used through illustrations or comic strips, journal entries, or how to guides/videos for each method.
(8) Have students create a map showing different regions of American Indian cultural groups. Include geographic features (e.g. desert, mountains, bodies of water, plains). Have students create a color-coded key to identify cultural regions.

(8) Have students create a product (possibly illustrated books, brochures, posters, infomercials or pamphlets) explaining how the environment influenced the way of life of a cultural group. Students should complete a guided worksheet or graphic organizer to collect information on all of the cultural groups.


(10) Have students create a collage (physical or electronic) showing diversity of cultural practices (artistic expression, language, religion, food) and the cultures that have influenced those practices. Encourage students to use web-based electronic tools to create their finished products.

  • http://edsitement.neh.gov “History/Social Studies” – “Early Multi-national Influences on the United States”

  • http://www.burttravels.com/whatweeat.htm Burt Wolf’s PBS series “What We Eat” looks at influence of Spanish explorers

  • www.eriecanal.org


Project Based Learning:

IMS Lesson “Creating and Analyzing Time Lines”
IMS Lesson “Welcome to North America”




Unit 5: Economics

April-May



Big Idea

Geographic, economic and cultural heritages are common attributes for regions.



Essential Question:

  • How does something acquire worth?

  • How do people get what they want/need?

  • Is competition good or bad? Why?
    How does the movement of ideas, goods and people affect culture?




Content Statement

Expectations for Learning

Resources/Instructional Strategies

Geography

9. Political, environmental, social and economic factors cause people, products and ideas to move from place to place in the Western Hemisphere today.


Economics

13. Information displayed in circle graphs can be used to show relative proportions of segments of data to an entire body of data

14. The choices people make have both present and future consequences.

15. The availability of productive resources (i.e. human resources, capital goods and natural resources) promotes specialization that leads to trade

16. The availability of productive resources and the division of labor impact productive capacity

17. Regions and countries become interdependent when they specialize in what they produce best and then trade with other regions to increase the amount and variety of goods and services available.

18. Workers can improve their ability to earn income by gaining new knowledge, skills and experiences.


Geography

9: Explain political, environmental, social and economic factors that cause the movement of people, products and ideas in the Western Hemisphere.


Economics:

  1. Construct a circle graph that displays information on part to whole relationships of data
    http://illuminations.nctm.org Search for “circle grapher”




  1. Explain the present and future consequences of an economic decision




  1. Explain how the availability of productive resources in a specific region promotes specialization and results in trade




  1. Explain how the availability of productive resources and the division of labor influence productive capacity



  1. Explain how specialization and trade lead to interdependency among countries of the Western Hemisphere




  1. Identify a career of personal interest and research the knowledge, skills and experiences required to be successful.

www.econedlink.org “widget” Lesson on productivity; “It Pays to Stay in School”

Lessons:

  • IMS Lesson: Allocation Methods, Exploring Cultural Practices and Products

(9) Content Elaboration:

  • Political factors include changes in political leadership, citizens rights, etc.

  • Environmental factors include climate, natural disasters, etc.

  • Social factors include discrimination, intolerance, religious freedom, etc.

  • Economic factors include the availability of resources, change sin trade patterns, employment opportunities, etc.

(13) When introducing circle graphs, have students brainstorm a list of topics, possible student ‘favorites,’ that could be displayed. For example, poll the class for their favorite ice cream flavors then ask students to create a circle graph that represents the class preferences.
(14) Help students understand consequences by having them appropriately match economic ‘action’ cards with ‘consequences’ cards (these can be both positive and negative consequences). Then have students match economic ‘choice’ cards with cards that represent ‘present consequences’ and ‘future consequences’

(15) Introduce new vocabulary related to productive resources, provide students with objects or pictures and have them categorize whether each is a human resource, capital good or natural resource. Connect to specialization by asking students to brainstorm products that could be made with each object. Then have students look at the object/pictures that other students have and discuss what products might be traded.


(16) Create a simulation that demonstrates shortages of resources, capital and labor. Have a “product” for students to create (such as hearts or other shapes made of construction paper). In order for students to make the product they will need resources (construction paper, scissors and instructions); place supplies into envelopes for students but have only one envelope with all the necessary resources. Divide the class into small groups and distribute envelopes to groups. During the production simulation, encourage students to trade resources and information to create the product.

(17) Provide students with data on the major imports and exports of North America and South America. Data can be generalized by region or specific to the most prominent trading countries. Have students create illustrations, either on paper or electronically, to show the flow of products from country to country or region to region. Illustrations could be drawn on maps or created using graphics software.



(18) Have students draw conclusions from economic data. Provide students with data on average income and expected level of educational achievement for selected occupations. Encourage students to compare education and potential income using critical thinking questions. Ask students to draw at least three conclusions from their data to share with their classmates.

  • www.westernreservepublicpublicmedia.org Economics Academy 101 offers videos and activities. Select “resources”

  • www.ctech.edu Career Development Lessons


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