Teacher(s): Greta Smith, Carla Goertzen, Jan Wray and Randy Heidel

Grade Level(s): 4th and 6th Grade

Content area: Reading

Time line: August 2008 - April 2010

Highest Bloom’s Level: Create



Creativity and Innovation

Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes using technology. Students:
apply existing knowledge to generate new ideas, products, or processes.

create original works as a means of personal or group expression.
use models and simulations to explore complex systems and issues.
Communication and Collaboration

Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others. Students:
interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments and media.

communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences using a variety of media and formats.
contribute to project teams to produce original works or solve problems.

Research and Information Fluency

Students apply digital tools to gather, evaluate, and use information. Students:
plan strategies to guide inquiry

locate, organize, analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and ethically use information from a variety of sources and media.
evaluate and select information sources and digital tools based on the appropriateness to specific tasks.
process data and report results.

Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making

Students use critical thinking skills to plan and conduct research, manage projects, solve problems, and make informed decisions using appropriate digital tools and resources. Students:
identify and define authentic problems and significant questions for investigation.

plan and manage activities to develop a solution or complete a project.
Digital Citizenship

Students understand human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice legal and ethical behavior. Students:
advocate and practice safe, legal, and responsible use of information and technology.

exhibit a positive attitude toward using technology that supports collaboration, learning, and productivity.
demonstrate personal responsibility for lifelong learning.
exhibit leadership for digital citizenship.

Technology Operations and Concepts

Students demonstrate a sound understanding of technology concepts, systems, and operations. Students:
understand and use technology systems

select and use applications effectively and productively.
troubleshoot systems and applications.
transfer current knowledge to learning of new technologies.

State Standards:

Grade 4
4.2.1: Literature (The student responds to a variety of text)
Benchmark 1: The student uses literary concepts to interpret and respond to text.
Indicator 1 & 2 - identifies characters and settings
Grade 6
Standard 1: Reading
Benchmark 4: The student comprehends a variety of texts (narrative, expository, technical, and persuasive)
Indicator 9: Summarize Information: Paraphrasing and organizational skills
Indicator 10 Topic, Main Ideas, Supporting Details and Theme (s)

Standard 2: Literature
Literature: The student responds to a variety of text.
Benchmark 1: The student uses literary concepts to interpret and respond to text.
Benchmark 2: The student understands the significance of literature and its contributions various cultures.

Grade 4

4.1.2 Student writes effectively for a variety of audiences, purposes, and contexts
Benchmark 2: Expository text
Indicators: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10,11,14, 15, 19, 20, 21, 22
Benchmark 4: Persuasive text
Indicators: same as above
Grade 6
Standard 1 - Writing: The student writes effectively for a variety of audiences, purposes, and contexts.
Benchmark 2: The student writes expository text using the writing process.

Indicators: 1) Develops a main idea, 2) clarifies the main idea, 3) practices writing using personal experience, observations, prior knowledge and research 4) expresses information in own words using evidence and examples and 5) cites information used or reproduced from any source.

Grade 4
Benchmark 1: Geographic Tools and Location: The student uses maps, graphic representations, tools, and technologies to locate, use, and present information about
people, places, and environments.
Benchmark 2: Places and Region: The student analyzes the human and physical features that give places and regions their distinctive character.
Grade 6
Benchmark 2: Geography - Places and Regions: The student analyzes the human and physical features that give places and regions their distintive character.
Benchmark 4: Human Systems: The student understands how economic, political, cultural, and social processes interact.

Grade 4
Benchmark 1: The student understands the significance of important individuals and major developments in history
Benchmark 2: The student understands the importance of experiences of groups of people who have contributed to the richness of heritage
Grade 6
Benchmark 2: The student uses a working knowledge and understanding of individuals, groups and eras...
Benchmark 4: The student engages in historical thinking skills.

Instructional Goals and Objectives

Students will use research skills and a variety of resources, such as interviews, primary texts, photos, to build a connection between our town's past, present, and future.
Students will use multi media application skills, such as iPods, digital cameras, and online publishing, to gain and record information.
Students will explore the use of computer applications, such as Google Sketch-up and Google Earth, to create a conceptual model of our town in the future.
Students will use GPS systems to understand our size and relevance in relation to our world as well as locate specific coordinates that are important to our town.
Students will use computer applications, such as iMovie, Photo Booth and Pages, to share their written summaries and create a literature connection between "The Seven Wonders of Sassafrass Springs" and our Buhler Legacy Project.


This unit is designed to utilize a literature connection to encourage students to journey through our town's past, present, and possible future in order to better understand and value our heritage. At the end of the journey students will have posters advertising our project, commercials advertising the seven wonders, a visual representation of our town's future, and a published book to share with our town.

Lesson components of our unit include:
1. Reading and making connections to the book, "The Seven Wonders of Sassafrass Springs," in order to compare and contrast Sassafrass Springs to Buhler
2. Composing a script and creating a video to summarize the book and explain the Legacy project to students and parents
3. Collecting information about locations and people in our town in order to create persuasive advertisements using Keynote to construct commercials and Pages to design posters.
4. Assessing each advertisement to prioritize and justify the seven wonders for our town through the use of the Intel Visual Ranking Tool
5. Using GPS coordinates to discover the seven wonders of our town
6. Explaining our project to city council members in order to recommend the use of established networks, like our town website, to relay information to community members
7. Generating questions and investigating the lives of past generations, using ipods during the interview process, in order to explain the present conditions in our community through the creation of a biography book.
8. Designing the future layout of our town using Google Sketch-Up and Google Earth to incorporate future needs of our community

Higher Order Thinking Applications

How has our community's past influenced not only our present, but our future?
What will my legacy be to this community?

At the creation level on the Bloom's chart, the conceptual construction of our town in the future is the highest leveled project in our unit. This component was completed by a small group of 6th grade students. Students imagined future needs in our community and designed the future city of Buhler using Google Sketch-Up and Google Earth. Requirements included planning for recycling, water conservation, alternative energy sources, as well as economic development in the downtown area.


We used multiple assessment techniques for different aspects of our unit. These varied from informal observations, interview notes, geocaching coordinates, and rubrics for smaller projects to meeting requirements on a 6 trait writing rubric for published pieces. There was not one overall assessment for the unit because of the multiple projects and grade levels working interdependently to achieve a common goal.


A wide range of technological devices were used throughout our project. Digital tools include: GPS devices, digital cameras, flip video camera, laptops, and ipods.
Students used technology to accomplish a variety of tasks. Internet applications such as Voki provided a tool for students to share their learning with a large and varied audience via the World Wide Web. Mixbook provided a way for students to actually publish there work in book form. Through the use of various technology tools paired with human resources students learned the many ways of collecting, creating and sharing information.

Multimedia Application(s)

*Past - Mixbook
Students went to Sunshine Homes Retirement Community to interview residents. The students asked a variety of questions about Buhler history with regards to economy, schools, traditions, ect. The students then took the information they gathered and wrote about 2 pages to be placed in an on-line book. Photos were also taken and added to the book.
This was a multimedia project because students used ipods and flip cameras to record the interviews and digital cameras for photos. Students used laptops to type the biographies of the resident they interviewed. Students then entered their biography on Mixbook. Photos of residents and students were added to Mixbook to enhance the work.
This project enhanced student learning in several ways:
1) Students were more engaged because they are excited about using technology in meaningful ways.
2) Students were able to focus on active listening because they were recording the interview thus eliminating the need write notes by hand.
3) The cameras provided digital documentation photos that added to the book.

*Present - Advertisements
This project required students to incorporate digital photography, images from the internet, research found on the internet and in paper books, community interview results, and audio recordings of student voices. The students created Keynote presentations to advertise for the wonders of our community. Their advertisements included visuals of the proposed wonder, research to support their proposal, and recordings of student voices as they explained why their wonder was worth voting for. These advertisements were shown on our school TV show. This project gave students an authentic audience, a motivation to create a persuasive product, and a sense of engagement as they worked in teams to promote "their" wonder.

*Future - Google Sketch-up
Students were asked to create a replica of what the town of Buhler in the future could look like using the online application Sketch-up. As they were creating the town in Sketch-up, they were asked to address city issues such as: recycling, alternate ways to conserve energy (different fuels) and communication on a global level. Each student could choose one area to develop. Their choices were - city park with swimming pool, tennis courts, ball fields, eating areas, bandstand, etc., a residential area, an industrial area, city transportation, downtown/businesses (farming, traditional or progressive), entertainment, quick shops, gas stations, and futuristic schools. After the design was created on Sketch-up, the students imported the design as an over-lay in Google Earth over the city of Buhler. A large poster of their work is on display at the school. In addition, students wrote about their section of the town as a writing project. Students printed the design that they created in Sketch-up and added their written piece to create a poster to be displayed. Students are using their knowledge to teach other students how to use Sketch-up and overlays in Google Earth.


The 4th and 6th grade TRC teachers collaborated across curricular areas to share ideas and implement standards-based learning projects into daily lessons while building the technology skills necessary to complete the grant project. Our TRC team met on designated dates throughout the grant period to reflect on activities, plan collaborative interactions between grade levels, and initiate the next steps. We utilized a Google Doc to record our thoughts, procedures, and planning.


All of the lessons in the project lend themselves to naturally differentiated instruction. Multi-level ability groupings were used to place students into collaborative teams. Students were provided with a template of skeletal expectations; however, within the applications used, students had the opportunity to minimize or extend their technology skills by making choices regarding visual presentation (adding pictures, differentiated text, links, choosing backgrounds/layouts, etc.) as well as the scope of their project.

Digital Citizenship

Throughout our project students have been taught to respect the rights of others in reference to being a good digital citizen. For example, we obtained permission from residents at Sunshine Holmes to video and to record their personal stories. Students have been informed about Internet safety and have been required to sign a district wide acceptable use policy. Students that participated in the project have been instructed not to plagiarize or use copyrighted materials. All parents were afforded the opportunity to opt out of having their child’s name or picture put on the Internet Mixbook site.

Closure and Reflection

Students will create a Voki and discuss their legacy to the Buhler community. Students will discuss ways they can impact the community and make Buhler a better place to live. This will be their "Buhler Legacy." After discussing and writing their ideas students will record them on Voki and these will be posted to the Buhler Legacy Wiki. Fourth and Sixth grade students will collaborate for this reflection project. Students will celebrate their academic and technological journey while honoring the older generation through the gift of a published book containing the historical backgrounds and memories they have shared.

Original ISTE NETS Template downloaded from http://iste.org
Adaptations for C&T 302 by Amber Rowland Fall
2008 Page 2 of 3