Sunday, November 23, 2014

Who Were the First Americans?

I introduced our Thanksgiving unit this week with the question, "Who were the first Americans"?  It was a good thing I asked this question before going further.  Here were some of the answers...

  • pirates
  • God
  • Jesus
  • Joseph
  • bears
  • dinosaurs
  • Native Americans
We then read an online book that introduced Native Americans and the six regions they lived in the United States at the time Europeans began to settle.  The following day students were given a QR Code to scan with their iPad which led them to one of 3 YouTube videos about a Native American region - Eastern Woodlands, Plains, or Southwest.

Then students paired with another student who listened to the same video.  Together they recorded information  about housing, food, clothing, and travel from the video.

Students then shared their findings with the whole group.  

Performance was evaluated using the following rubric which was discussed extensively before the start of the project.

The videos were short and so we had time to view all three of them after the presentations.  Hearing about the videos prior to viewing helped us look for certain facts.  Viewing the videos as a whole group helped individuals see some major points they had overlooked.  The next day we recorded all that we had learned about the first Americans.  I was really impressed by how much the students had retained.

Here are links to the 3 videos:

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