- Melody Casey
- English Language Arts
- Material Type:
- Lesson Plan
- Upper Primary
- Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial
Lesson 4 Simulation Activity Handout
Lesson 4 Simulation Reflection Questions
GEDB 5th Grade Poverty Unit: Simulation and Interactive Map Research (Lesson 4 of 6)
In this lesson, students will listen to a read aloud book about a struggling farming family that changed their life and overcame poverty. Then, students will explore an interactive map pertaining to poverty in the state that they live in. The students will be split into groups to conduct research and answer questions to reflect and further their knowledge. Students will participate in a simulation activity that will include different scenarios to show how people stay out of poverty while others are forced to live in it. This lesson was developed by Jena Hazelwood as part of their completion of the North Carolina Global Educator Digital Badge program. This lesson plan has been vetted at the local and state level for standards alignment, Global Education focus, and content accuracy.
In this lesson, students will listen to a read aloud book about a struggling farming family that changed their life and overcame poverty. Then, students will explore an interactive map pertaining to poverty in the state that they live in. The students will be split into groups to conduct research and answer questions to reflect and further their knowledge. Students will participate in a simulation activity that will include different scenarios to show how people stay out of poverty while others are forced to live in it.
Student Engagement: (5 minutes)
Students will get with a partner and discuss what they believe poverty means. Then, the teacher will select four volunteers to share their responses.
Learning Targets and Criteria for Success
I can define poverty.
I can conduct research to compare and contrast poverty in different counties of North Carolina.
I can provide factors that contribute to poverty.
I will use an interactive map to help me compare and contrast poverty in different counties of North Carolina.
I will participate in a simulation activity to recognize factors that contribute to poverty.
The Good Garden: How One Family Went from Hunger to Having Enough By Katie Smith Milway
Poverty USA Map: http://www.povertyusa.org/data
- Poverty USA Questions Handout (see attachments)
- Simulation Activity Handout (see attachments)
- Simulation Reflection Questions Handout (teacher will need to print questions out ahead of time-see attachments)
- Simulation materials:
- Red, yellow, and blue index cards (There should be more yellow and only a few blue. For example, if there are 22 students in a class, the teacher will give out 12 yellow cards, 3 blue cards, and 7 red cards.)
- Instruction handout for teacher to read to students during activity
- Reflection questions for teacher to read to students after activity
Learning Tasks and Practice
- Activate Prior Knowledge: (10 minutes)
The teacher will read aloud the book The Good Garden: How One Family Went from Hunger to Having Enough By Katie Smith Milway. After the book is read, the teacher and students will discuss how the family overcame poverty and how a simple garden gave them hope.
- Direct Instruction: (30 minutes)
To begin the simulationactivity, the teacher will place a piece of tape in the center of the room. The teacher will give each student one of the three different colored index cards so that there are more yellow index cards and a few blue index cards among the class. Then, the teacher will instruct students to line up on the tape shoulder to shoulder. The teacher will use the simulation activity handout (see Simulation Activity Statements attachment) to read different scenarios that will show how people stay out of poverty while others are forced to live in it. The students will follow directions while the teacher reads from the handout.
After the simulation activity, the class will reflect on their feelings and understandings using the following questions (see Lesson 4 Simulation Reflection Questions attachment):
- Look at where you ended up standing, how does this make you feel when you look at others around you?
- How does this simulation activity connect to the real world?
- How are the “step backwards” experiences connected to poverty?
- If you mostly stepped forward during the activity, how did you feel while moving ahead?
- If you mostly stepped backward during the activity, how did you feel moving behind?
- What are some of the main causes of poverty?
- What responsibilities come with moving ahead of the group rather than falling behind?
- Guided Practice and Reflection: (25 minutes)
After the simulation activity, the teacher will divide students into groups to learn about poverty in the state that they live in. The teacher will determine the number of students for each group depending on class size. Students will access this interactive map of poverty in the United States http://www.povertyusa.org/data. The teacher will pass out the handout that includes the reflection questions for this activity (see Poverty USA Questions attachment). Each group will use the map to reflect on the following questions using one piece of paper. To ensure that all group members are participating and reflecting, they will take turns answering the questions by passing the paper to each group member after discussing the answer as a group. If there is no technology available, the teacher may print off the statistics from the interactive map for the students or use the interactive whiteboard to show the map to the whole class. Each group will have a copy of the statistics to use to answer the research questions. While the students are conducting research and reflecting on the question stems, the teacher will be observing and guiding groups who are in need of further instruction.
- Find your state on the interactive map. What percentage of your state population is living in poverty? How does this make you feel?
- Find your state and then your county on the interactive map. What percentage of population in your county is living in poverty? How does this make you feel?
- How does your poverty percentage compare to those counties surrounding you?
- What does this mean for people deciding where to live, work, and go to school?
- Sharing and Closure: (5 minutes)
Students will come together as a whole class and share to the whole group their findings. Each group will pick a spokesperson to speak, but all group members will come to the front together. The teacher will point out important points to ensure that students understand the facts that were discovered at both stations. The class will use the experiences from the simulation activity to discuss factors that may have caused poverty in the state that they live in. To conclude the lesson, the teacher will point out that the last two lessons will be about ways in which people have overcome poverty and what they, as students, can do to help people living in poverty.
Students will use laptop devices to conduct research by using an interactive map. If the teacher does not have access to laptops, then the teacher can conduct lesson as a whole group activity. The teacher may also print off the statistics from the interactive map for the students. Each group will have a copy of the statistics to use to answer the research questions.The teacher will use the document camera to enhance the viewing of a read aloud book. If there is not a document camera, then the teacher can sit in front of the class and read the book aloud.
Collecting and Documenting Evidence of Learning
The teacher will use observations while the students are in groups using the interactive map.
The teacher will read the map research group question answers to assess understanding of poverty in the state that they live in.
Student Self-Reflection and Action Steps
Students are given opportunities to share their thoughts to a partner as well as the whole group. If students have not met instructional goals they will be paired with students who have met the instructional goals and can help them further their understandings. Students that have met the instructional goals can help coach students who need further support. The teacher can monitor throughout the lesson to support students who need additional instruction.
Throughout the lesson students are given opportunities to work together and reflect on their understanding of poverty. Students are given time to share their thoughts and are given feedback from their peers and teacher. There is paired discussion throughout the lesson as well as whole group discussion that will enable the teacher ample opportunities to provide feedback. The teacher can adjust the lesson by spending more time on certain topics if the students are not showing adequate understanding. There can be further conversations about poverty if the teacher feels that it is necessary before moving on to another activity.
Extended Learning Opportunities
Students can create a slide show presentation or any digital poster to share with others what they have learned or know about poverty. Students can create a story in which the character lives in poverty and somehow overcomes it just like the read aloud at the beginning of this lesson.
Teacher Reflection of Learning
The teacher will review the group interactive map research group question answers and use observations throughout the lesson to ensure that students are meeting the goals of the lesson.