14 episodes

This podcast was developed as part of an elementary-level Clark County School District Teaching American History Grant. The three-year grant funds six modules per year with each module focusing on a different era of American history and a different pedagogical theme. This podcast focuses on Colonial America and Classroom Simulations. Participants in the grant are third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers in Clark County (the greater Las Vegas area), Nevada. Teaching scholars include Drs. Michael Green and Deanna Beachley of the College of Southern Nevada and Dr. Christy Keeler of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. As part of this five week module, teachers meet on campus on two occasions and the remainder of their work is completed online.

Colonial America and Classroom Simulations Christy G. Keeler, Ph.D.

    • Education
    • 2.8 • 4 Ratings

This podcast was developed as part of an elementary-level Clark County School District Teaching American History Grant. The three-year grant funds six modules per year with each module focusing on a different era of American history and a different pedagogical theme. This podcast focuses on Colonial America and Classroom Simulations. Participants in the grant are third, fourth, and fifth grade teachers in Clark County (the greater Las Vegas area), Nevada. Teaching scholars include Drs. Michael Green and Deanna Beachley of the College of Southern Nevada and Dr. Christy Keeler of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. As part of this five week module, teachers meet on campus on two occasions and the remainder of their work is completed online.

    Colonial American Days

    Colonial American Days

    To design a Colonial American Day program, I recommend offering six stations with one or more adult volunteers manning each station. Each station would have a different theme and each activity at that station should take 15-20 minutes to complete. Teachers at Hayes Elementary School in Las Vegas, Nevada, led by Shauna Harris, designed a program to match this description. You can view their 90-minute rotation plan here and the accompanying Pilgrim's Passport (a sheet for student reflection on at each station) here. Alternatively, teachers may choose to dedicate one day to an individual station's theme, doing all the activities from that station in a whole class or small group setting throughout a single day. Station possibilities include art, cornhusk dolls, science, games, cooking, and household chores/trades. Examples of centers for each of these stations appear below and are also available as a downloadable document. The downloadable document is editable and includes needed materials for 72 participants (12 per station at one time). Pictures of these activities taken on September 16, 2009 at Green Valley High School as part of the Clark County School District Teaching American History Grant appear below. ___________________________________________ Cornhusk Dolls Place a tarp on the floor and place a large tub of water in the middle to pre-soak cornhusks. Materials: Version: Corn husks (enough for each participant to have about 10 husks), Ball of string or twine, Scissors, Large tub filled with water (place corn husks in water before class), Rubberband ball, Tarp Use the instructions available at http://www.teachersfirst.com/summer/cornhusk.htmHere is a video of third graders in Ms. Graham's classroom at Staton Elementary School making cornhusk dolls. Video ___________________________________________ Science Sundials Use instructions from King, D. (1997). Colonial Days: Discover the Past with Fun Projects, Games, Activities, and Recipes (American Kids in History Series). Wiley, John & Sons Inc., page 9. Materials: Ream of cardstock (any light color), Scissors, Black felt tip pens, Rulers, Protractor, Scotch tapeMeasuring Tree Height Use instructions from King, D. (1997). Colonial Days: Discover the Past with Fun Projects, Games, Activities, and Recipes (American Kids in History Series). Wiley, John & Sons Inc., page 22. Materials: Ball of string, Scissors, Measuring Tape/Yardstick, Masking tapeMaking Compasses Use instructions from Carlson, L. (1997). Colonial Kids: An Activity Guide to Life in the New World (A Kid's Guide series). Chicago Review Press, page 16. Materials: Small magnet, Nails (long), Pie pans (filled with water), Wine corksCandle Making Place melted paraffin into clean cans placed on beverage warmers (to keep wax melted). Have students wrap the end of an approximately 12" string to one end of a pencil or popsicle stick and wet the string to give it some weight. Have students dip their string into the wax and then immediately into the water. Repeat this process until the candle forms to a reasonable size. Use hands to massage the candle into the proper shape. Materials: Ball of white string, Popsicle sticks, Household paraffin wax, Scissors, Beverage warmers, Cans (fill half with water), Aluminum foil (to cover beverage warmers to keep them clean)Here is a video of third graders in Ms. Graham's classroom at Staton Elementary School making candles. Video___________________________________________ Games Jacks Use instructions from King, D. (1997). Colonial Days: Discover the Past with Fun Projects, Games, Activities, and Recipes (American Kids in History Series). Wiley, John & Sons Inc., page 39. Materials: Jacks, Small rubber ballsJackstraws Use instructions from King, D. (1997). Colonial Days: Discover the Past with Fun Projects, Games, Activities, and Recipes (American Kids in History Series). Wiley, John &

    Recommended Resources: Colonial America

    Recommended Resources: Colonial America

    In addition to the resources listed elsewhere in this blog, I recommend the following resources for studying the Colonial American era with intermediate level learners: Mayflower History: This site is dedicated to teaching about the Mayflower using primary sources. There are links to the sources (mainly letters) linked from the site. Colonial Williamsburg Email List: This newsletter appears in email boxes once per month and includes information about given colonial era topics, links to primary sources addressing those topics, teaching suggestions related to the issue topic, and resources available from Colonial Williamsburg. Note: The emil is a means of commercially seeking buyers, but the content is still worthwhile.Colonial Williamsburg Summer Teacher Institutes: These one-week institutes engage teachers in the colonial era through lecture as well as simulated experience. They occur on-site and include room and board. The cost for the week is $1,900, but scholarships are available.Reader's Theater Resources: Several companies offer reader's theater scripts relating to Colonial America. I recommend both Teacher Created Materials and Houghton-Milton (for slower readers) scripts.Chautauqua Presentations: For a fee of $50, Nevada Humanities will underwrite the expenses of having a Chautauqua presenter come to your school for a performance. Annually, the Boulder City Chautauqua Performers (including Young Chautauquans) present. See schedule for times and dates.The Lesson of 1623—Yours, Mine, and Ours: This is a free video available from izzit. It uses resources from Colonial Williamsburg to tell about the era. By joining izzit, teachers are given one free video from their collection each year. Note that each video also includes a teacher's guide. One of Virginia's Teaching American History Grant projects produced some amazing unit plans relating to the colonial era. You may access them here.These books are useful for pedagogical purposes, especially when using simulation strategies to teach about Colonial and Revolutionary periods of U.S. history.Baicker, K. (2002). Primary Sources Teaching Kit: Colonial America.Scholastic.Broida, M. (2003). Projects About Colonial Life (Hands-on History). Benchmark.Carlson, L. (1997). Colonial Kids: An Activity Guide to Life in the New World (A Kid's Guide series). Chicago Review Press. 0 false 18 pt 18 pt 0 0 false false false /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-fareast-theme-font:minor-fareast; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-bidi-theme-font:minor-bidi;} King, D. (1997). Colonial Days: Discover the Past with Fun Projects, Games, Activities, and Recipes (American Kids in History Series). Jossey-Bass. King, D. (2001). Revolutionary War Days: Discover the Past with Exciting Projects, Games, Activities, and Recipes (American Kids in History Series). Jossey-Bass.Nobleman, M.T. (2003). History Pockets: Colonial America, Grades 4-6+. Evan Moor.Pak, A. (2005). Colonial Life (Time Travelers History Study Series). Homeschooling in the Woods.

    "Where to Build a Colony" Lesson Plan

    "Where to Build a Colony" Lesson Plan

    Where to Build a Colony Lesson Plan In the lesson plan "Where to Build a Colony", developed by Linda Reeves of Pat Nixon Elementary School, students experience compromises needed to determine where to place the Jamestown Colony on a map of the region where the settlers landed. Students each simulate different professions of those reaching the American shores in 1606 and each must advocate for his position (e.g., the fisherman must advocate for being in the vicinity of a good fishing location whereas the entrepreneur must advocate for a location that might maximize gold prospects). This lesson would fit well in a unit on Jamestown. Consider using "Jamestown Spies," a unit plan geared toward intermediate-level learners. Richards Maxwell developed it as part of a Virginia Teaching American History Grant. The unit includes several lessons, relying on numerous primary sources. Students work with bar graphs of supply lists, create charades to reinforce difficulties of the settlers and their interactions with Native Peoples, practice literacy skills while interpreting an etching by Theodore de Bry, and consider geography as they map John Smith's explorations of Virginia.

    Electronic Simulations for Teaching the Colonial Era

    Electronic Simulations for Teaching the Colonial Era

    I recommend the following simulations relating to Colonial America. Colonial Williamsburg's Teacher Site: In addition to those cited below, Dale Van Eck of Colonial Williamsburg created a nice overview of history-related online games he presents in the form of a handout. Tour the Town: This site allows you to move virtually throughout Colonial Williamsburg. Upon clicking on a given map feature (e.g., the Governor's Palace), it provides a history of the feature. A Day in the Life: This site is based on the "A Day in the Life" video series and links to a variety of activities (e.g., "Take the Betsy Ross Challenge"). The Kid's Zone: Through games, students can learn to identify colonial tools (Co-Operation, Tool Trouble), processes (Brickmaker Build-Up, Pardon or Pillory), and clothing styles (Heads Up for the Colonists, 18th Century Paper Doll Game). The Jamestown Online Adventure: This quick online simulation allows students to make decisions relating to the trek toward Jamestown. At the end, students compare their answers to those of the colonists.Memorial Hall Museum Online—American Centuries: This rich site includes a collection of colonial era artifacts as well as simulations for students to experience. For example, students can "dress" a person in colonial garb. Tom Snyder's Decisions Decisions: I recommend Colonization. Though it does not relate to Colonial America, it assists students in understanding some of the complications that emerge when colonizing new locales. Note that UNLV's Curriculum Materials Library has the Decisions Decisions series available for check-out by CCSD teachers.Virtual Jamestown: This site includes numerous interactives showing early Jamestown with particular attention given to Native/settler interactions. A good place to start is to look at the "John Smith's Voyages of Exploration."I recommend the following links for colonial era learning activities: Innovative Teaching Newsletter: Colonies: This edition of Innovative Teaching focuses on the American colonies, providing a plethora of related educator-friendly websites. One recommended webquest is "You Be the Historian." 5th Grade History Page (This has several broken links, but the remaining links are quite helpful)

    Module Syllabus

    Module Syllabus

    Click here for the module syllabus.

    Lecture: Dr. Michael Green — "Seven Years War"

    Lecture: Dr. Michael Green — "Seven Years War"

    Lecture: Dr. Michael Green — Seven Years War

Customer Reviews

2.8 out of 5
4 Ratings

4 Ratings

jbarnett06 ,

5th Grade Teacher

How completely boring. I was expecting to hear more about using classroom simulations to increase student learning about Colonial America.

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