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Exploring Democracy in America Today
Josephine Zarro
Government and Civics, Language Arts, US History




Unit created on 9/4/1999 EST.
Last modified 7/30/2001 12:50:08 AM EST.


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Fundamental Understandings (help)


In this unit students learn about the meaning of democracy by engaging in a variety of activities which include studying primary and secondary documents, poems, and essays, writing essays and stories, researching de Tocqueville on the internet, conducting interviews with adults in their community, visiting a web database and entering data. The culminating activity is a videoconference or a meeting with an expert on the life and work of Alexis de Tocqueville.


Technology ISTE Standards (info) 


Technology Standards Basic operations and concepts Identify capabilities and limitations of contemporary and emerging technology resources and assess the potential of these systems and services to address personal, lifelong learning, and workplace needs. Technology productivity tools Use technology tools and resources for managing and communicating personal/professional information (e.g., finances, schedules, addresses, purchases, correspondence). Technology communication tools Use technology tools and resources for managing and communicating personal/professional information (e.g., finances, schedules, addresses, purchases, correspondence). Routinely and efficiently use online information resources to meet needs for collaboration, research, publications, communications, and productivity. Select and apply technology tools for research, information analysis, problem-solving, and decision-making in content learning. Collaborate with peers, experts, and others to contribute to a content related knowledge base by using technology to compile, synthesize, produce, and disseminate information, models, and other creative works. Research tools Routinely and efficiently use online information resources to meet needs for collaboration, research, publications, communications, and productivity. Select and apply technology tools for research, information analysis, problem-solving, and decision-making in content learning. Collaborate with peers, experts, and others to contribute to a content related knowledge base by using technology to compile, synthesize, produce, and disseminate information, models, and other creative works.

Information Literacy Standards (info) 


This unit addresses the following information literacy standards: Standard 1 Accesses information efficiently and effectively, Standard 2: Evaluates information critically and competently, Standard 3: Uses information effectively and creatively, Standard 4: Pursues information related to personal interests, Standard 5: Appreciates and enjoys literature and other creative expressions of information, and Standard 6: Strives for excellence in information seeking and knowledge generation

Relevance (help)


Students will have a clear understanding of the concept of democracy and the meaning of being an American: the sacrifices that have to be made to make it work, and the importance of participating in the democratic process. They will gain awareness of their community, discovering political problems, and seek ways to address those problems.

Assessment (help)


Students improve their reading, writing, speaking, listening, and critical thinking skills through a variety of forman and informal assessments during each lesson of the unit.

Components (help)


Lesson 1: Writing About and Discussing the Meaning of Democracy/Examining primary texts focusing on democracy in America Lesson 2: Gathering and examining data from the community via surveys on current issues in America. Lesson 3: Searching for Alexis de Tocqueville on the Internet/Viewing & Discussing Video on the American Promise. Lesson 4: Writing and sharing anecdotes derived from family interviews on what it means to be an American/ Writing essays: What is the Value of Being and American? and What is an American?

URLs (help)


http://


Workforce Competencies (info) (help)


Information Manager Students locate, comprehend, interpret, evaluate, maintain, and apply information, concepts, and ideas found in literature, the arts, symbols, recordings, video and other graphic displays, and computer files in order to perform tasks and/or for enjoyment. Effective Communicator Students communicate in English and other languages using information, concepts, prose, symbols, reports, audio and video recordings, speeches, graphic displays and computer-based programs. Creative and Critical Thinkers Students use creative thinking skills .to generate new ideas, make the best decisions, recognize and solve problems through reasoning, interpret symbolic data, and develop efficient techniques for lifelong learning. Ethical and Responsible Workers Students display responsibility, self-esteem, sociability, self-management, integrity, and healthy decision-making. Resource Manager Students appropriately allocate time, money, materials, and other resources. Cooperative Workers Students work cooperatively to successfully complete a project or activity. Effective Leader Students establish credibility with their colleagues through competence and integrity and help their peers achieve their goals by communicating their feelings and ideas to justify or successfully negotiate a position, which advances goal attainment. Culturally Sensitive Leader Students appreciate their own culture and the cultures of others, understand the concerns and perspectives of members of other ethnic and gender groups reject the stereotype of themselves and others and seek out and utilize the views of persons from diverse ethnic, social, and educational backgrounds.
Lessons


What is Democracy/Why is it Important to Americans? Lesson 1
What Do Others Think About America? Lesson 2
What is an American/What is the Value of Being American? Lesson 4
What is the "American Promise"? -Searching for Alexis de Tocqueville, Lesson 3





Copyright 1997-2003
Career Connection to Teaching with Technology
USDOE Technology Innovation Challenge Grant
Marshall Ransom, Project Manager
All rights reserved.

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