What is an Alabama Veteran?
A Social Studies Lesson Plan Developed for
Upper Elementary- Level Students (Grades 4-6)
Created by Kaci Brasher and Tiffany Gardner-Elementary Teachers
Alabama Veterans Memorial Park Project Directors – Dr. David C. Little, Samford University
And Lulu Richardson, AVMP Education Committee
Grade Level: 4th-6th
Curriculum Area: Social Studies
Estimated Time: 2 hours, depending on discussion
(The lesson can be divided into two or more class periods)
Alabama Course of Study Social Studies Standards
4. 11) Describe the impact of World War I on Alabamians
• Recognize Alabama participants in World War I: Alabama's 167th Regiment of the Rainbow Division
4.13) Describe the economic and social impact of World War Two on Alabamians
• Recognizing Alabama participants in World War II: Tuskegee Airmen
Alabama Course of Study Technology Standards:
3-5. 5.) Practice safe use of technology systems and applications
Students will be able to
Define the term military veteran
Describe the contributions of Alabama’s 167th Regiment of the Rainbow Division
Describe the contributions of the Tuskegee Airmen
Describe the reasons why we celebrate Veterans Day
Locate and describe the Alabama Veterans Memorial Park
Optional Learning Activities
Describe symbols, songs and pledges that represent our country and the correct protocol when using them.
Evaluation of Learning Objectives:
Complete the “L” of the KWL worksheet with 80% accuracy
Complete Exit Ticket with 80% accuracy
Answer questions on the Worksheet for AVMP website
MATERIALS TO PROVIDE:
Computers with Internet Connection (Enough for 2 students to share)
Lesson Plan Background Information:
What is a Veteran?: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/veteran
The History of the Star Spangled Banner: http://mrnussbaum.com/authors/francis_scott_key/
Alabama Veterans Memorial Park Website: http://www.alabamaveterans.org/
National Anthem by Lexi Walker: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jUhfNBGQ9Bg
KWL Worksheet (What do you know?; What would you like to learn?; What did you learn?)
The students will follow the standard rules and procedures implemented by the instructor. Upon entering the classroom, the students will sit at their assigned seats and put away any materials not needed for this lesson. The teacher will call the students to the carpet/whole group area.
The teacher will read the learning objectives for this particular lesson. The teacher will hand each student a KWL worksheet (See Resources). The teacher will ask the students to complete the “What do you KNOW” section by answering the questions on the KWL Worksheet.
I. Teaching (Script);
1. The teacher will ask the students to share the “K” section of their KWL Worksheet on a military veteran. After they have commented the teacher will put on the smartboard/whiteboard: A military veteran is a former member of the United States Armed Forces of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard or Marine Corps. The teacher will then ask the students to complete the “W” section on the Chart.
2. Ask students if they know anyone who was in the military (Answer: Various students’ stories).
3. What are some of the jobs that men and women do while in the military? Play a video interview with a veteran to show students what one veteran did (Video not yet ready for website). After a discussion: Complete the L section of the Chart for question number 1.
4. The teacher will ask the students if anyone knows anything about (the second item on the chart) Alabama’s 167th Regiment of the US Rainbow Division? Ask the students to complete the “W” section of the Chart. The teacher will give some background information pre-war Alabama and the Regiment (See Resources) and then show slides of Alabama’s 167th Regiment of the Rainbow Division. The teacher will lead a short discussion. Leading questions would be helpful such as
“What do you think the lives of young men were like in Alabama before WWI in 1915?”
“What do you think it was like for them to leave home and go to a foreign country and have to fight.”
“What do you think changed in Alabama because of the War?”
After the discussion: Complete the L section of the Chart for question number 2 with five facts or more.
5. Teacher will show video of Tuskegee Airmen (Tuskegee Airmen Visit the White House) and ask who they were and what impact these men had on the lives of others. After the discussion: Complete the L section of the Chart for question number 3 with five facts or more.
6. Ask students if they know what we celebrate on November 11th (Answer: Veterans' Day).
7. Ask students to turn and talk to someone sitting next to him or her about possible reasons why we celebrate Veterans Day.
8. After 2-3 minutes, the teacher will ask students what they discussed. The teacher will tell students that we celebrate Veterans Day to honor the men and women who served our country while in the Armed Forces. The teacher will mention to the students that Birmingham has a large parade downtown on Veterans Day. And, the Alabama Veterans Memorial Park has a ceremony on the Sunday before Veterans Day. Anyone can attend and there is no admissions fee. Ask if they know of other places that celebrate Veterans Day. After the discussion: Complete the L section of the Chart for question number 4.
Optional Activities: Songs, Pledges and Symbols of the United States of America
9. The teacher will explain to the students that we recognize and honor our country in a variety of ways. The teacher will display the class flag and ask what the flag is a symbol of (A: Our country, freedom, etc.). The teacher will tell students that each color represents a characteristic that men and women who serve our country try to uphold (Point and say: The red represents bravery, the white represents goodness, and the blue represents justice). The stars represent each of the 50 states. The teacher will then discuss the proper protocol when the US flag is presented during a ceremony or a parade. (Information in Resources)
10. The teacher will ask students if they can think of other symbols or songs that represent the United States (A: “The Star-Spangled Banner”, the Pledge of Allegiance, Washington D.C. monuments, etc.). If a student does not name the Pledge, the teacher will prompt students about the Pledge of Allegiance by asking them what they say each morning while facing the flag. Discuss proper protocol when saying the Pledge. Explain the protocol for a citizen of another country while in the US. (Information in Resources).
11. The teacher will ask, “What is the name of our National Anthem?” “What should we do when it is sung or played?” (Information in Resources). Have a student read the letter written by Alabama Vietnam Veteran Mike Barber (The letter is also on the alabamaveterans.org website under letters on Regiment of Columns Tab). The teacher will then display a short Youtube Video of a young girl singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jUhfNBGQ9Bg). Students should stand and face the flag (or music/video if no flag is available) with their hands over their hearts.
The teacher will then begin instruction of the history of “The Star Spangled Banner.” The teacher will ask the students if they know the lyrics to “The Star Spangled Banner” (Students response will vary). The teacher will then project/write key facts about our nation’s national anthem. The teacher will first write the author’s name, the year the song was produced and the author’s purpose for writing the song
(Author: Francis Key Scott, Year Produced: 1814 and Author’s Purpose: The British battle of Fort McHenry in Baltimore).
The teacher will tell students that these symbols, songs, and pledges are ways we remember what makes our country great.
II. Opportunity to Practice Website Search: Script:
1. The teacher will ask the students if they have heard of the Alabama Veterans Memorial Park off I-459 and Liberty Parkway Exit in Birmingham. They will tell the students that they are going to do research on this place that honors military veterans.
2. The teacher will show the Alabama Veterans Memorial Park on Google Earth, pointing out
a. Memorial Trail;
b. American Flag Plaza;
c Memorial Plaza with the Hall of Honor. [Show Video of the Park] link to be added later
3. The teacher will explain that the Memorial Trail is a 1000’ path through the woods that is wheelchair accessible where people can come and walk, even bring their dogs. On Google Earth the path looks like it splits but actually the left fork is a service road. The Memorial Trail veers to the right.
4. The teacher will explain that at the end of the Memorial Trail on the right is the American Flag Plaza where bricks called StepStones are placed permanently. The bricks have written on them the names of veterans with their rank and branch of service. These bricks encircle the flag pole flying the American Flag. As of Memorial Day, 2016, there were 934 StepStones in place.
5. The teacher will also point out the Memorial Plaza which is to the left at the end of the trail. In the Memorial Plaza are the Hall of Honor and Regiment of Columns. There are special names on the Hall of Honor Walls and special items on the Columns.
6. Explain to students that they are going to work in pairs to answer some questions about the Alabama Veterans Memorial Park using the Park’s website, alabamaveterans.org and a worksheet. (See Resources for Website Search form).
7. After the students have had time to complete the worksheet, the teacher will ask students to identify facts concerning the material they read on the AVMP website. (See Resources for Teacher’s Worksheet).
The teacher will formatively assess students working in pairs during the AVMP website search and (if optional activities are used) discussing the symbols that represent the United States.
The teacher will provide an Exit Ticket (See Resources) which asks five questions. The descriptions need to be in complete sentences. These will be checked by the teacher for accuracy.
The students will be required to complete the “L” section of the KWL worksheet from today’s lesson with 80% accuracy.
The teacher will ask the students, “What one thing did you learn about veterans that you would like to learn more about?”
Plans for Individual Learners and Differentiation Strategies:
Teacher will follow the accommodation guidelines determined by the individual student WIDA standards. The teacher will repeat vocabulary terms as needed for individual ELL students. Teacher will pair advanced/early finishers with ELL students to complete writing assignments. The teacher will record lessons for additional instruction time for ELL students. Any additional accommodations and modifications should be determined by the classroom instructor.
Students with IEP:
Teacher should follow accommodations and modifications determined by each students IEP. For the “L” section of the KWL worksheet, the student will be required to complete three key facts instead of five.
Invite a veteran that one of the students in your class knows or you know to come speak.
9 Things You May Not Know about “The Star-Spangled Banner” http://www.history.com/news/9-things-you-may-not-know-about-the-star-spangled-banner
Reflection: To be completed after assessment