The Cultural Enrichment of Texas
Designed by: Susan Earl
4th Grade Teacher
C.B. Berry Elementary School
The fourth grade students at C.B. Berry Elementary School have been tremendously enthusiastic about researching the "roots" of our great state. The students worked cooperatively together to identify the diverse cultures which have influenced and impacted the growth and way of life in Texas.
The following lesson plan was implemented during the last six weeks of the school year, after students had been taught research skills and safe internet usage throughout the year.
Guideline for Student Research
The Cultural Enrichment of Texas
A Fourth Grade Research Project for Social Studies
Developed by: Susan Earl
Purpose of Research: To identify the diverse cultures which have influenced and impacted the growth and the way of life in Texas
Directions for Students: Follow the steps listed below. You may work with a partner or work alone on the initial research. After completing your research, you will need to work with a partner to complete the project.
1. Read about the various cultural groups which first settled in the land known as Texas. Compare the reasons why each culture made the decision to immigrate to Texas. Discuss with other group members how you believe problems encountered by early immigrants could have been better solved. Make a chart or graph that depicts each cultures reason(s) for immigration to Texas, problems encountered by each group of immigrants, and their solution(s) to their problems. Or create a problem/ solution flowchart delineating the results of your discussion.
2. After reading about and discussing each cultural group, select a specific culture that you would like to learn more about and research it thoroughly.
3. Develop a list of questions relating to information you would like to discover as you conduct your research. Locate and check out books relating to the culture you have selected. Use the internet as a resource. Go to teacher selected web sites on the Internet. Check with your teacher before going to any unauthorized web site. Check out films that relate to the cultural group you have selected. Write to various Chamber of Commerces requesting information on your specific cultural group.
4. Use all of your resources to write a research report on your selected culture. Make sure you answer all of the questions you developed relating to the information you wished to discover.
5. After you have finished your report, reflect upon your research and identify specific cause and effect relationships which resulted from the immigration of your chosen culture to Texas.
Example: Because of lack of food and fresh water many immigrants died before ever reaching their desired destination.
6. Compare and contrast your research with the research developed by one of your research partners. Display your data on a poster or create a Venn Diagram.
7. Work with a partner to create a project or develop a media presentation in which to display your research results.
8. Work with the whole group to plan and design a web page in order to "publish" and make your research available globally for all students.
To view student research and projects, or to obtain links to research web sites used in this lesson go to http://ourworld.cs.com/Arske4/CET.html