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Unit A:

US History: A Swift
Trip Through Time
First Five Weeks

Intended Learning Outcomes:

Students will:
Acquire a broad overview of knowledge of a particular period in US political history;
Evaluate this knowledge on "need to know" criteria;
Gain an appreciation of teacher-learner process;
Comprehend basic trends in US History;
Become familiar with particular persons and events in our nation's past,

In order for the other sessions of U.S. History to succeed, certain basic knowledge of US History is
required. The purpose of this mini-unit is to introduce the student to people and events in American
History that helped shape this nation. Rather than expect students to read the entire textbook
during this unit, students will work in teams to cover in-depth one period in American History. Each
team will then instruct the rest of the class. Teams will be responsible for acquiring information,
determining how best to present the information to the class, evaluating students on the basis of
their knowledge, and evaluating their own instructional techniques. In addition, the class will
construct a timeline to which students can refer in later seminars.

US History Timeline - class project
Teaching Unit - group project
Study Guide
Visual aid
Test Questions

Individual Accountability
Unit Test created from questions designed by instructional groups;
Assignments given by instructional groups;
Lesson plan forms.



The class will be divided into groups of 3 to 4 students each for a total of eight groups. Each group
will have one week to examine its assigned topic. Each group is responsible for preparing a lesson
designed to instruct the class about the important people, ideas and events related to the group's
topic. The group is also responsible for the preparation, delivery, and evaluation of one assignment
designed to aid the class in mastering material related to the topic. These assignments should be
textbook based. In addition, each group will create six to ten questions for possible inclusion on the
unit-ending test.

Step 1 - Determine, as a group, which sections of the text are pertinent to your topic. Divide the
reading accordingly.

Step 2 - After reading and compiling information from the text relevant to your topic, expand your
research. We will spend class time for this purpose.

Step 3 - As a group, determine how you wish to present the information to the class. Some
suggested techniques are listed at the end of this assignment.

Step 4 - Prepare, either individually or as a group, the lesson plan form you will receive in class.

Step 5 - Create assignment for class which either aids instruction or reinforces learning. Do not create
meaningless or busy-work assignments. Assignments which are either ridiculously easy or impossibly
difficult do not help the learning process.

Step 6 - As a group, write the required test questions. By doing this before you teach the class you
will be better able to focus your instruction on what you'll expect the class to master.

Step 7 - Your group will have one class period in which to instruct the class. During this time you will
be in charge of the class. I will serve to assist you and to keep order, if necessary, but the actual
running of the class will be the responsibility of your group. I will confer with you prior to your actual
teaching and lend suggestions as well as make available what material I have that might assist you in
your task.

Step 8 - Collect and grade all assignments given by the group. Give the grades to me and return the
graded assignments to the class. It is a courtesy to your classmates that you be prompt in this

Step 9 - As a group complete the Lesson Evaluation Form that you will receive after you finish your
teaching. This will help you determine how well you did and what things you might do in the future
to strengthen your presentation skills. You will have opportunities later in the course to present to
the class again. Take this opportunity to honestly evaluate your performance. It will not detract from
your grade.

1) European Exploration
exploring, discovery, freedom, nature
2) Colonial Period
3) American Revolution
4) Declaration of Independence
5) The Constitution and Bill of Rights
6) The New Republic
7) The Industrial Revolution
8) Westward Expansion
9) Civil War
10) Reconstruction

Instructional Techniques
Lecture - quick way to disseminate large amounts of information;
Worksheets - another way to give students information, also helpful in determining if
students have acquired information;
Group work - allows for creative or critical thinking; provides support in difficult tasks;
Role playing/simulations - students often retain information better when made pertinent in
this fashion;
Audio-visual presentation- also may aid students in retaining information;
Other - perhaps you and your group will come up with a unique method of instruction...


GROUP MEMBERS: ___________________________

(What students will learn)

(How material will be presented)

(What will measure student learning)

(What you need to present this lesson)