As promised, here are more of responses from your fellow teachers to the question: “Describe (in brief) the best Montana history or IEFA lesson/project resource your taught this year--the one you will make time for next year no matter what.”
Native American Biography Book Project: Students pick a current Native American and go through the process of writing a "book" about their person. They learn all the parts of a book and how to organize the information about their famous Native American. Computer skills are learned as well as most write their book on the computer and learn how to save and insert pictures etc.
I use a Blackfeet creation story from a George Grinnell book to teach some Blackfeet vocabulary. We find specific words in the story and illustrate them and write their names in Blackfeet and English on the drawings. These are posted the rest of the year. We also fill in a Venn diagram to compare and contrast the Blackfeet creation story to the land bridge theory in our social studies textbook.
Two teachers talked about technology projects they do around Lewis and Clark. Jim Holland, (7th grade history, Townsend), breaks the Corps travel through Montana into 8-10 chapters and the students work in groups to use the online Moulton edited journals at the University of Nebraska to find out about flora, fauna, landmarks, and events during the days they are responsible for. Each group creates a PowerPoint. Then they run the PowerPoints in chronological order to tell the whole story. It takes about 3 weeks of researching and prep and 3 weeks in a computer lab to complete the project.
Cindy Mapson has her third and fourth graders in Denton also do a Technology project on the Lewis and Clark Expedition. “My students learned research skills, PowerPoint, flip cameras, digital cameras, and then made a CPS unit review and quiz. They each researched their Corps member and did a PowerPoint on the person. From their PP they produced a first person dialog about themselves as the Corps member. We did 1st person interviews on the Flip video cameras as my students were dressed as one of the Corps members each. We then made a movie about the Corps members. We took a fieldtrip to the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center and read a novel book in our reading class about the Expedition. Students took pictures while we were at the L&C Center that they thought they would use in the final book we made together as a class.”
Stay tuned for future installments.