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Teaching Social Studies: Final Project:

Shelby Buscher
Rachael Celia
Brittany Bisese

Standard: ALEX Social Studies 3rd grade: 2.) Locate the continents on a map or globe

Using vocabulary associated with geographical features of Earth, including hill,

plateau, valley, peninsula, island, isthmus, ice cap, and glacier
Locating major mountain ranges, oceans, rivers, and lakes throughout the world

1. When given a felt board with continent pieces and continent names (pieces
separate), students will be able to manipulate all continents and labels so that they
match a correct map. 100% accuracy is considered proficient.
2. When given 13 photos of geographic features, students will correctly label 10 of the
photos to their names to be considered proficient.
3. When given a map of globe, students will label 10 major mountain ranges and each
ranges highest peak with 17 out of 20 landforms labeled correctly to be considered

Content needed for students to be successful in achieving the objects. (Provide

summary of how content aligned w/ learning objective)

Students will need to know what a mountain is, what a mountain range is, and what
qualifies a range as a major mountain range. Students will learn about the
following 10 range: Himalayas (Central Asia), Hindu Kush (Asia), Ural
(Europe/Asia), Alps (Europe) Andes (South America), Rockies (NA), Appalachian
Mountains (NA), Transantarctic range (Antarctica), Great Dividing Range
(Australia), Eastern Rift Mountains (Africa). In order to meet the objective of this
standard, which is to locate, I am not only teaching my students to locate these
landforms on the map, but I am also incorporating the creating level of Blooms
taxonomy through having them design a presentation about this content. This will
ensure that my students are thinking on a higher level about the content than what
the standard calls for. Also, this ensures that I am teaching on a higher level than my

Students should know the names of the continents, their places on a map/globe, and
be able to place them in the correct place. The standard states identify, which they
will be able to do, but I am taking it to the applying level of Blooms with my
practice/ learning activity and my assessment.
Students should be able to identify geographic vocabulary including: Hill, Plateau,
Valley, Peninsula, Island, Isthmus, Ice Cap, Glacier, Canyon, Bay, Waterfall, Delta, and
Volcano. This includes the words specifically listed in the standard, but I felt that it
would be good to add more vocabulary, particularly since these are features they
are likely to come across as they are studying other aspects of geography.

Learning activities for each objective to incorporate into the teaching of the lesson.
(should reflect an understanding of literacy strategies for content areas).
The lesson will begin with the book, then move on to learning the continents song.
After a few repetitions of the song, students will practice locating the continents by
playing an online game where they are prompted to find the continent. This game
has multiple levels. Students will also paint pumpkins like a globe, and label with a
sharpie when dry. This could be incorporated with the other lessons, for you could
label mountain ranges and some landforms as well.
Jigsaw activity presentations- In order to teach this part of the standard, students
will be prepare a short presentation about their major mountain range. Students
will be split into pairs by the teacher and the teacher will record the names each
pair. She will place these names on slips of paper and draw at random so that
students can choose their mountain range to research. Students will be given time
in class to research and prepare their presentations. Once they have chosen their
mountain range, students will begin the research process. Students should focus
their presentation on the location and the highest peak within that mountain range.
Students must use the Google Earth tool in their presentations to show the location
of the range to students and show the highest peak in the range. For additional facts
about these ranges, students may use the teachers sources as a starting point but
must do additional research. Students must use at least one teacher source and at
least one additional source (books, websites, non-fiction magazine articles, etc). In
addition, students will compare the mountain range to another mountain range
according to an important characteristic of the range (climate, length of range, peak
height, etc). The teacher will assess these presentations using a rubric. This rubric
will assess on a scale of 1-4 the following areas: if the location was clearly
stated/demonstrated, if the highest peak was mentioned/shown, the depth of
student research, the number of sources used, the types of sources (scholarly non
scholarly), the use of the Google Earth tool, and the inclusion of comparison to
another mountain range.

This activity will teach students not only to locate the major mountain ranges
of the world, but also incorporates the McRel strategies of cooperative
learning, nonlinguistic representations, summarizing, and identifying
similarities. Each of these strategies has been shown to increase student
success across all grade levels and subject areas. Also, this activity appeals to
visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners and gives students the opportunity
to listen, write, read, and talk about the content.
Graphic organizer- Modified Column Notes: Students will be given a graphic
organizer packet with 10 pages, 1 page for each of the 10 mountain ranges to fill out
during the presentations. These organizers will be discussed prior to making their
presentations and will serve as a guide to help students to know what information is
most important when researching these mountain ranges. The organizer will have a
categories such as (Name of Range, Location/Continent, Highest Peak, Fun Facts,
and Compared to ______________).
This component of the activity helps extend the expectations of the standard
by helping them not only know the locations and highest peaks of 10
mountain ranges, but it helps them learn to note-taking skills. Also, this
activity will increase student success because it helps make thinking visual.
Geography Jeopardy.
Using both pictures and definitions, create a geography jeopardy
This is the geography jeopardy game I created. Students can break up
into small groups or pairs to play. Each team will have a whiteboard
to write their answers. The team with the most money wins an extra
2 points on the final assessment. The team who has the correct
answer first will choose the next question.
While this activity does not cover the initial teaching of the vocabulary, which
can span several lessons, I believe that it provides a fun way for students to
review their vocabulary in a way that is rewarding and a little competitive. It
incorporates both definitions and pictures of actual geographical features.
The initial teaching of the vocabulary terms would, I believe, be best
introduced slowly, while students are learning more in-depth about the
different continents and landforms. By being able to identify the terms and
define them, students are better suited to be able to discuss their
relationships with each other when learning about the Earth.

Assessment for each objective

Students will be given felt blue felt and cutouts of the continents (felt) and cutouts of
the names (laminated paper). The students will likely finish painting their pumpkins
at different times, so when they finish, the teacher will ask students to come to a

table I am at that has 3-4 different sets of all of these things. They will then complete
their board, putting continents and labels in the correct place, and the teacher will
take a picture of them and their board, or make note of what was correct/incorrect
on a piece of paper. If there are too many students waiting in line, they could help
clean up the room/ their hands and then come back.
Students will be given a paper that has a list of 13 real examples of the vocabulary
terms. Ex: The Grand Canyon. They will be asked to label each photo with the
correct geographical term. The students should label at least 10 out of the 13
questions to be considered proficient. Between 8-10 may need review, and 7 or
below will need individual tutoring or re-teaching.
I chose this assessment because it focuses on students being able to identify
the physical features of the terms. This supports the students understanding
of the different geographical features of the earth, one of the focuses of the
Students will be given an individual map with the continents labeled. In each
continent, there will be mountain ranges drawn with a letter out to the side.
Students will write next to the letter the name of the Mountain range. Inside each
mountain range, there will be a star with a number beside. This star represents the
highest peak of that mountain range. Students will write the name of the highest
peak next to the number. There will be a word bank at the bottom of the page with
each of the ranges and highest peaks listed in random order.
I selected this assessment so that students can pictorially represent their
knowledge of where these landforms are located. It is a clear measure of
whether or not students can locate these landforms and extends their
learning by asking them to identify the major peaks of these ranges also.

3 online sources
This would be a great activity for students to be able to work on and have as
a review of the definitions. I think this would be helpful even though it uses
cartoons rather than photos. I think the cartoons may be able to help them in
generalizing what the vocabulary word looks like.
National Geographic has some amazing photos of the vocabulary words. It
also has examples of how the vocabulary words can differ according to where
in the world it is. It also has definitions for the terms, as well as where the
photo is located. It may be a good follow up activity to locate where the
photo is on a map.

This is the jeopardy game I created (more is explained under learning

This is a song about the continents set to a familiar tune. The teacher, or the
video states the continent first, and the children echo. As the continents are
sung, there is also a visual representation of the labeled continents. This is a
song that would help children remember the names of the continents and
would work well for visual and auditory learners. There could also be
movement added, and later you could have the children practice putting their
maps together as the song is sung. That way it would apply to kinesthetic
learners as well.
This is a site that offers a wonderful opportunity for practice. There are
games at 4 different levels, that prompt you to find a continent on a map.
There are sound effects which would help lower level students, and the levels
allow for scaffolding.
Link to Assessment Idea

This is the link to the original lesson plan from which I got my idea.

This site gives background knowledge of what constitutes a mountain range.
This video teaches students to use Google Earth so that they can incorporate
it into their presentation.
Resources for Student Research (Starting point):
This site lists some of the worlds major mountain ranges, where they are
located and their highest peaks.
This site gives background knowledge on what mountains are and different
types of mountains.
This site has a chart which lists major mountain ranges, locations and heights
of highest peaks.

This site gives a visual representation on a map of where different ranges are
located on the globe.
3 childrens books
Theres a Map on my Lap- Tish Rabe
I chose this book to both grab the students attention and to teach them the
basics of reading a map. It is all well if they know what the shapes of the
continents are, but understanding the scale of those shapes and where they
are in relation to one another teaches them a skill rather than just content.
Geography: A Childrens Encyclopedia by DK
I chose this book because it uses beautiful photos that help students connect
that the vocabulary terms are real places. I think this would be a great book
to have out for students to look through on their own time to be able to learn
more in-depth about the vocabulary and their relation to other aspects of
geography. This can also help them with their research skills in looking up
the terms.
Geography from A to Z by Jack Knowlton
I chose this book because I think it would be a great way to introduce the
geography lesson. I think it would be great to read a couple of letters aloud
each lesson. I think it would also be good for introducing even more
vocabulary terms that would otherwise not get discussed that much.
Maxwells Mountain- by Shari Becker
I chose this story because it would be a great way to get students excited
about their project exploring mountains! This story engages students in the
content by making them explorers, like Maxwell, who want to learn about
and climb these enormous mountains.