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CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT

Curricular Plan Project


5-4-15
Katie L. Warren
CIL 680
University of Nevada Las Vegas

CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT


Definition
The central focus of my curricular plan project is heroes. Throughout the unit, students
will have the opportunity to learn about and research American Heroes, Female Heroes,
Inventors, Military Heroes and Sports Heroes. At the start of the unit, teacher and students will
collaborate to define what a hero is and list the common characteristics that are found in wellknown heroes. Upon completion of learning about the various types of heroes, students will
select one genre to focus on and complete a Project Based Learning (PBL) project on one
significant figure. The driving question for this project will be, How has __________s actions
and accomplishments changed the world I live in today?
I feel this an important theme to teach because students can learn from those who came
before them. By learning about and researching heroes, students can learn that it is possible to
overcome circumstances and challenges to be successful. Many of my students come from low
socioeconomic households and are considered underprivileged and/or at risk. Learning about
ordinary people who did extraordinary things can inspire them to not let circumstance, others
opinions, self-doubt, fear or failure stand in the way of pursuing their dreams.
In addition, this unit will focus on the following third grade reading, social studies and
research standards:
Reading Informational Texts:

RI.3.3-Describe the relationship between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or


concepts, or steps in technical procedures in a text, using language that pertains to time,

sequence, and cause/effect.


RI.3.5-Use text features and search tools (e.g., key words, sidebars, hyperlinks) to locate

information relevant to a given topic efficiently.


RI.3.6-Distinguish their own point of view from that of the author of a text.
RI.3.7-Use information gained from illustrations (e.g., maps, photographs) and the words
in a text to demonstrate understanding of the text (e.g., where, when, why, and how key

events occur).
RI.3.9-Compare and contrast the most important points and key details presented in two

texts on the same topic.


RI.3.10-By the end of the year, read and comprehend informational texts, including
history/social studies, science, and technical texts, at the high end of the grades 2-3 text
complexity band independently and proficiently.

CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT


Reading Literature:

RL.3.3-Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and

explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.


RL.3.7-Explain how specific aspects of a text's illustrations contribute to what is
conveyed by the words in a story (e.g., create mood, emphasize aspects of a character or
setting).

History:

H3.3.1- Explain how the actions of heroes and heroines make a difference.
H3.3.1A-Explain how the actions of heroes and heroines make a difference, i.e.,

community members, military veterans and fictional characters.


H3.3.2- Determine what it means to be an American citizen and describe the

achievements of famous and ordinary citizens.


H3.3.3-Define ethnicity and explain that people who make contributions to their
communities include those who have diverse ethnic origins, customs, and traditions.
Research:

W.3.7-Conduct short research projects that build knowledge about a topic.


W.3.8-Recall information from experiences or gather information from print and digital
sources; take brief notes on sources and sort evidence into provided categories.
Cornerstone Text
The cornerstone text selected for this unit is Giant Steps to Change the World by Spike

Lee and Tonya Lewis Lee. I selected this picture book because of the inspiring text and beautiful
illustrations. The authors and illustrator depict how various important figures overcame
challenges and continued to follow their dreams despite various failures. This text anchors my
unit on heroes because it is a great introduction to heroes throughout history who have taken
"giant steps" to make a difference in the world. This book encourages children to follow in their
footsteps and not let circumstance, self-doubt, fear or failure stand in the way of pursuing their
dreams.

CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT


Theme and Sub-Themes
Theme: Heroes
Cornerstone Text: Giant Steps to Change the World by Spike Lee and Tonya Lewis Lee
Sub-Theme
Text Set
Historical Heroes
1. Heroes for All Times (non-fiction chapter book)
2. Tales of Famous Heroes (informational biography)
3. Tales of Famous Americans (informational biography)
Female Heroes
1. Women Who Made a Difference (biography)
2. Players in Pigtails (historical fiction picture book)
3. I am Sacagewea (non-fiction chapter book)
Scientific Heroes
1. An Illustrated Timeline of Inventions and Inventors
(informational text)
2. 10 Inventors Who Changed the World (biography graphic novel)
3. Innovators: Mark Zuckerberg (biography)
Military Heroes
1. War Dogs (informational text)
2. African American Military Heroes (informational text)
3. Todays Air Force Heroes (informational text)
Sports Heroes
1. Who Was Jackie Robinson? (non-fiction chapter book)
2. Larry Bird (informational text)
3. Venus and Serena Williams (informational text)
Selection Criteria
When selecting resources for this curricular plan, I wanted to have a variety of fiction and
non-fiction texts as well as media sources. With heroes being such a broad theme, I wanted to
offer students literature that included multiple genres, various reading levels, a variety of
interests and a diverse group of inspiring individuals for students to research. It was important
for me to include both significant historical figures as well as modern day heroes. I wanted to
challenge students to conduct research on people they had little to no prior knowledge about in
order to learn what made/makes them a hero.
When browsing the library to select literature to accompany this project I was able to find
many books that met the criteria I was looking for to enhance the unit. To meet the broadness of
the unit I would need to check out a number of books for each sub-theme. For this assignment, I
selected just three books to show the variety of literature for each sub theme.
Response-Based Experiences
1. What is a hero? What are the traits and characteristics of heroes?
This discussion will be had at the beginning of the unit. By utilizing the cornerstone text,
discussions, instructional biography videos and various fiction and non-fiction texts,

CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT


teacher and students will define what a hero is and list the common characteristics that
are found in the heroes we have learned about. Students will add to the list throughout the
unit.
2. Explain the ways in which heroes impact and make a difference in the world.
Through various forms of literature, multimedia resources, discussions and research
students will be able to determine and explain the ways in which various heroes make a
difference in the world.
3. Which hero do you most want to be like and why?
After reading the cornerstone text, referencing multimedia resources and conducting
research of their own, students will explain which hero they most want to be like and
why.
Assessment
Throughout the unit, I will give many formative and summative assessments to check for
understanding. For the final assessment piece, my students will conduct a project based learning
(PBL) project. The goal of their projects will be to answer the following driving question: How
has __________s actions and accomplishments changed the world I live in today? Students will
have the option to work with a partner or independently. In addition, students will choose how
they will present their findings to their teacher and peers. This can include (but is not limited to):
Prezi, PowerPoint, blog, video, question and answer interview between student and hero,
brochure, informational text, poster board or play.

CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT


Annotated Bibliography
Aronin, M. (2012). Todays air force heroes. New York, NY: Bearport Publishing Company,
Inc.
This informational text focuses on the air force branch of the military. The topics within
the text focus on events following September 11, 2011 and the role air force men and
women have played in the War in Iraq. There are colored photographs throughout that
show various air force heroes, helicopters and fighter jets and awards that can be awarded
for service.
Boyce, N.P. & Osborne, M.P. (2014). Heroes for all times. New York, NY: Random House
Childrens Books.
Heroes for all Times is a non-fiction chapter book and companion to the Magic Tree
House book High Time for Heroes. This book includes factual information about
Florence Nightingale, Harriet Tubman, Susan B. Anthony, Mahatma Ghandi, Martin
Luther King Jr., and John Muir. In addition, this book includes black and white
photographs, illustrations with factual snippets of information along the margins of the
pages, and tips for how students can conduct further research on each individual.
Brown, J. (2005). People we should know: Venus and Serena Williams. Milwaukee, WI: Weekly
Reader Early Learning Library.
This informational biography tells the inspiring life story of tennis stars and sisters, Venus
and Serena Williams. The text is accompanied by both black and white and colored
photographs of the sisters throughout their lives. In addition, there is a section that
provides the titles of books and websites for additional research on the sisters.
Corey, S. (2003). Players in pigtails. New York, NY: Scholastic Inc.
This historical fiction picture book tells the story of Katie Casey, a player in the All
American Girls Professional Baseball League. The league was created during World War
II when many men were serving in the military. The book was inspired by the movie A
League of Their Own and proves that girls can accomplish just as much as boys.
Gifford, C. (2009). 10 Inventors who changed the world. Bolton, Ontario: Kingfisher.
This illustrated informational biography uses graphic novel-style illustrations and text
bubbles to provide information on: Archimedes, Galileo Galilei, Benjamin Franklin, James
Wyatt, Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Thomas Edison, Nikola Tesla, Marie Curie, Glenn Curtiss,

CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT


Sergei Korolev, and other famous inventors. Life-link boxes connect the inventors to one
another.
Goldish, M. (2012). War dogs. New York, NY: Bearport Publishing Company, Inc.
This informational text focuses primarily on three military war dogs: Sasha, Target and
Rufus and their accomplishments in Afghanistan. The text also explains what types of
dog breeds are selected to be military dogs, what type of equipment they wear while on
the job, and the various missions they participate in. The book also includes colored
photographs of Sasha, Target and Rufus, various military dogs in action and the dogs with
their military partners.
Harris, L.L. (2011). Biographies for beginners: Women who made a difference. Pleasant Ridge,
MI: Favorable Impressions.
This collection of biographies profiles the lives and accomplishments of sixty of the most
influential and admirable women in history. The text provides black and white portraits of
each woman as well as black and white photographs from various moments in their lives.
In addition, the text provides websites at the end of each biography to allow for additional
research.
Haskins, J. (1998). African American military heroes. Canada: Navta Associates, Inc.
This informational text is a collection of biographies profiling the accomplishments of
African American military heroes throughout history. The text is divided into the
following time periods: The Early Years, The Civil War Years and Reconstruction, Into
the New Century and Modern Times. The book also provides a chronology of all the
heroes profiled.
Herman, G. (2011). Who was Jackie Robison? New York, NY: Grosset and Dunlap.
This narrative nonfiction chapter book tells the inspiring life story of Jackie Robinson. It
explains how Jackie was a gifted athlete but excelled in baseball. The book also describes
how Jackie faced hate from both baseball fans and his own teammates, but that he
persevered and helped to end the color barrier in sports. The text features a brightly
illustrated cover while incorporating black and white illustrations throughout the book.
Jordan, D. & Jordan, R.M. (2000). Salt in his shoes: Michael Jordan in Pursuit of a dream. New
York, NY: Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers.

CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT


This beautifully illustrated picture book was written by Michael Jordans mother and
sister and tells the story of Michael as a young boy. As a child he was smaller than the
other players, but he learned that determination and hard work are more important than
size.
Lee, T.L. & Lee, S. (2011). Giant steps to change the world. New York, NY: Simon and
Schuster Books for Young Readers.
This beautifully illustrated picture book highlights people throughout history who have
taken "giant steps" to make a difference in the world. The authors and illustrator depict
how various important figures overcame challenges and continued to follow their dreams
despite failing once or twice. This book encourages children to follow in their footsteps
and not let self-doubt, fear or failure stand in their way.
Norwich, G. (2012). I am Sacagawea. New York, NY: Scholastic Inc.
This narrative nonfiction book tells the inspiring life story of Sacagawea. The text
features a brightly illustrated cover while incorporating black and white illustrations
throughout the book. Text features also include a timeline of her life, an introduction to
the people students will meet throughout the book, maps, notes in the margins, and a list
of the top ten things students should know about Sacagawea after reading the book.
Roop, C. & Roop, P. (2007). Tales of famous americans. New York, NY: Scholastic Inc.
This informational biography profiles the lives and accomplishments of the following
influential men and women: Pocahontas, Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Davy
Crockett, Abraham Lincoln, Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Harriet Tubman,
Sitting Bull, Thomas Edison, Madam C.J. Walker, Wilbur and Orville Wright, Helen
Keller, Jackie Robinson, Martin Luther King Jr., Dolores Huerta, Yo-Yo Ma, and Mia
Hamm. The text combines the use of black and white photographs with brightly
illustrated portraits of each person profiled.
Roop, C. & Roop, P. (2010). Tales of famous heroes. New York, NY: Scholastic Inc.
This informational biography profiles the lives and accomplishments of the following
influential men and women: Paul Revere, Sybil Ludington, Sacagawea, Sojourner Truth,
Frederick Douglas, Florence Nightingale, Mohandas Gandhi, Winston Churchill, Rosa
Parks, Jonas Stalk, Nelson Mandela, Neil Armstrong, Jane Goodall, The Tuskegee
Airmen, Muhammad Ali, Billie Jean King, Sonia Sotomayor and Barak Obama. The text
combines the use of black and white photographs with brightly illustrated portraits of
each person profiled.

CURRICULAR PLAN PROJECT

Spengler, K.T. (2012). An illustrated timeline of Inventions and Inventors. North Mankato, MN:
Picture Window Books.
This illustrated timeline depicts inventions and inventors starting in ca. 1 million BC with
how early humans learned to control fire and ending in 2010 with Steve Jobs and the
invention of the iPad. In between, readers read about many other inventions and
inventors. This is a great book to introduce students to inventions and inventors that they
may want to research further. There is also a feature where students can create a timeline
of the things and people they learned about by thinking about objects around their house
they use every day.
Woog, A. (2009). Innovators: Mark Zuckerberg facebook creator. Farmington Hills, MI:
KidHaven Press.
This informational text is divided into the following five chapters: The Face Behind
Facebook, Discovering Computers, Launching Facebook, Maintaining and Growing
Facebook, and The Future. The text briefly introduces readers to Mark Zuckerberg then
focuses on how he created Facebook, how he is maintaining and growing the brand and
his plans for the future. In addition, the text provides websites that allow readers to
research other social networking sites such as BrainPop and Facebook for Kids.