Interdisciplinary Unit

Sara Gottlieb, Yvonne Saxton, Andrew Foley, Patrick Smith, Gina LaVerghetta and David Sorrentino

Unit Title:

Colonial America

Student Population and Length of Unit (Identify the grade level and the estimated length of your unit.):The length of the unit will be three weeks (15 days) and the subjects will include Math, two different History lesson plans, and three different lesson plans for English Literature. The student population is made up of 44 seventh graders, 22 per class.


Focus questions (4):
1) What are some of the cultural, historical, mathematical and grammatical differences of modern times and the colonial era?

2) What was life truly like for the citizens of the colonial era?

3) What are some of the important important events that took place during this time?

4) What impact has William Penn made in not only colonial life, but in Pennsylvanian history?

Goal statements (Provide broad statements that show concepts that will be developed in the unit.):

English Literature (1): The Colonial Drama - Upon “visiting” Pennsbury Manor, students will have been shown the historical backdrop to one of the early events provided by Pennsbury Manor. Students will have improved their reading comprehension and application of the “drama” by their performances created in class.
English Literature (2): Students will understand the concerns of a person who was living during the Colonial period. They will also more clearly understand tone, style and voice in their writing.
English Literature (3)The goal of this lesson is for students to become more knowledgeable about William Penn’s relationship with the Lenni Lenape Indians, as well as colonial life in general. This lesson employs reading, writing, and critical thinking skills.
History (4): Students will compare and contrast the daily lives and activities of the colonial period to the present day.
History (5):
Math(6): Students will be able to identify costs associated with a sea voyage in Colonial times by gathering information via the internet to define what those costs were during the time of William Penn. They will research the number of days it takes to cross the Atlantic Ocean by ship, compute the average knots per hour, the costs of various items needed to make a voyage during that time, and compute the costs of this trip for a family of six – 2 adults and 4 children. Microsoft Excel will be used to create a budget for the entire voyage.

Instructional Plans (Include lesson plans here with an introductory lesson and a culminating lesson.):
English Literature (1):


English Literature (2)
Dave Sorrentino

English Literature (3)- Sara Gottlieb

History (4)
History (5)
Math (6)

Long term projects (Include a detailed description of projects that will take place during the unit, for example, research projects, field trips, webquests, webhunts, podcasts, other technology projects.):
1- Students will complete a webquest to research what life was life during the colonial era, for example what the language sounded like, how people dressed. This will enhance not only their research and critical thinking skills, but will enhance their understanding of the unit.
2 -With the Colonial Period as their backdrop, the students will speak and act out a play, and then write a letter, as their character, to William Penn expressing their concerns. They will edit their partner's letter, then answer their partner's letter as William Penn. They will expand their understanding of voice, tone, and style in their writing.
3 - Students will complete their web 2.0 tool creations on a Native American story or legend and present them to the class; students will re-write their persuasive pieces after they have gone on the virtual field trip-- this will, in turn, enlighten the students on the editing process as well as revising statements.
4 -
5 - Students will complete the following projects: development of a thesis based on daily life as outlined in the introduction and virtual field trip, thoroughly detail their research used to support their thesis, complete a one page paper stating their thesis and supporting arguments and completing a webquest concerning the aspects of daily life in the colonial period.
6 - Students will create a budget used to prepare for a voyage during colonial times, travelling across the Atlantic Ocean from England to the Americas.

Assessment strategies (Describe the methods you will use to assess the overall effectiveness of your unit. How will you know if you have met your goals?):
1) One assessment strategy that will be used is the insistence upon using a rubric for grading items such as the play created. A student will be evaluated using the rubric. This will gauge how the students have either met or not met my goals for the class.

2) The students' writings will be assessed on the successful creation of two letters, written in the proper voice of their characters. The letters will need to be properly written, grammatically correct, and they must express concerns appropriate to a Colonial-Era American. Students must offer appropriate comments on each others work.

3) For assessment, teacher will grade students' work based on rubrics that were handed out in class-- these rubrics reflect the PA Academic Standards and they were explained to the class. Rubrics will determine the grades that each student will receive.
4)
5) A rubric will be created detailing the expectations of the students research, presentation and written paper.
6) A presentation of an excel spreadsheet will be given by each group for the entire class, using a rubric to define and evaluate the criteria required for this final presentation of each group's research. A worksheet with British monetary exchange rates will also be used to juxtapose the American dollar to the British pound, using conversion rates to stimulate mathematical processes already learned. I expect proficiency at a class average of 80%.



Resources (Include a specific list of any resources that the students will use to complete this unit, for example, reference materials, web sites, music, artifacts, videos, charts, maps, technology, etc.):
a) Kemper, Dave, Patrick Sebranek, Verne Meyer, and Chris Krenzke. Write source . Teacher's ed. Wilmington, Mass.: Write Source, 20062007. Print - This resource will give step by instruction about how to write a play, poem and letters. It is a great writing resource.
b) http://thewongsters.wikispaces.com/Virtual+Field+Trip (Virtual Field Trip of Pennsbury Manor created by the Wongsters.)
c) Promethean Board, laptops with Excel and internet access
d) http://mathforum.org/library/view/5727.html (Budgeting for Voyage across the Atlantic Ocean during colonial times)
e) http://www.educationworld.com/a_lesson/TM/WS_colonial_arithmetic.shtml (British monetary exchange rates worksheet)
f)

Bibliography (Include a list of books, websites and journals that are appropriate for the grade level on the topic.):
a) Read Aloud Plays: Colonial America by Marci Applebaum.
b) Mattern, J. (2010). William Penn. Chelsea House Pub.

General adaptations and accommodations:
a) An adaptation and accomodation would be the use of prompts. Students that need further instruction will be given a list of prompts to help spark research and discussion. Also, a list of websites could be provided to help ease the stress of research.
b) Students from ELL backgrounds will be asked to share the history of the methods of communication in their home country, if appropriate, to compare them to those of Colonial America, and modern-day America. This will hopefully provide perspective to their classmates. Autistic student will be given first choice of character, to engage them in the lesson, and will be paired with a student who has strong communication and language skills.


References (Include a detailed list of the sources for your ideas for this unit.):
http://www.pde.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/community/state_academic_standards/ (State Academic Standards)
http://www.ushistory.org/penn.html (History of William Penn)
http://www.genealogybranches.com/welcome1682.html (Passenger list on the voyage of William Penn to America)