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Unit Plan Research: Learning Teamwork and Lesson Plan for a Third-Grade Classroom


Student Teacher    30 | -   Freelance Writer
Jul 30, 2014 | #1

Unit Plan: Learning Teamwork



Unit Overview

The emerging interconnectivity of the international community has positioned collaboration, teamwork, and effective communication strategies at the forefront of global citizenship. The socialization of elementary school students within the United States toward support of these elements is therefore crucial, with teamwork representing an essential skill that will aid children throughout their academic lives and well into the future. This unit focuses on various elements of teamwork for a third-grade classroom, affording particular attention to navigating diversity, enhancing trust, supporting communication, and encouraging group creativity.

Learning Classroom EssayThe five-plan unit applies various techniques which can be applied in multiple disciplines, with language arts, social studies, and visual arts being particularly applicable to the lessons contained herein. The entire unit will take three weeks to complete, assuming that time and energy are devoted to the lessons on a daily basis. An overarching goal of the unit is to aid students in supporting personal autonomy within the team environment, becoming more conscious of the ways in which their personal actions contribute to the team's effectiveness.

Assessment Techniques

Cumulative portfolios will be created by each team throughout the course of the unit, with each student tasked with organizing their own section of the team portfolio; contained within each student's personal section will be reflective journaling, peer and team reviews, and progress reports regarding the team's evolution. The individual student sections of the portfolios will be reviewed by the teacher after each of the first four lessons are completed in order to allow for amendment of the lesson if adequate progress is not being made. The student portfolio analysis will allow for the educator to be sure the objectives are being met, with a key aspect of successful teamwork being the equitable contribution of each individual. If the portfolios suggest that the students are not contributing equally to the team, roles may need to be rearranged or the educator may need to afford greater attention to one team over another.

The final assessment of the team portfolio will be completed after the fifth lesson. This represents the cumulative work completed by the teams, with each team receiving a final grade weighted to equal the individual grades. The assessment of the team portfolio will be used to assess the group dynamic in general, the effectiveness of the teams as a single unit rather than a collaboration of individual contributions, and the ability of each team to produce a cohesive, final product for all of the work they have completed in the unit. In terms of both the individual portfolio sections as well as the final team portfolio, this formative method was chosen in order to allow for greater, qualitative, comprehensive assessment of individual and team progress. Summative, standardized tests would not afford the educator sufficient understanding of team progress and individual perspectives. Additionally, the linkages between the unit and the humanities, namely language arts, visual arts, and social studies, validate such assessment for its ability to support multidimensional narratives on the parts of all students.

Unit Lesson Plans



Lesson 1: Elements of Teamwork and Team Collage

Grade Level: 3

Duration: Day 1, 1 Hour

Subjects: Language and Visual Arts, Social Skills

Content Standards: Language Standards: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking; Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing. Visual Arts Standards: Students apply artistic processes and skills, using a variety of media to communicate meaning and intent in original works of art.

ELL Standards: Standards 1 and 2: The Language of Social Skills and the Language of Language Arts

Vocabulary: Team, Collaboration, Diversity

Materials: Premade PowerPoint presentation on the Elements of Teamwork, Construction Paper, Markers, Crayons, Scissors, Magazines, Unit Folders for EACH STUDENT

Objectives:

1. Teacher will place students in teams of four; for the duration of the unit, desks will be arranged in these team groups.

2. Teacher will present the elements of teamwork via a multimedia presentation. Students will be asked what they believe a team is, why teams are important, and what different types of teams are.

3. Students will individually create "Team Collages" which will reflect understanding of the various kinds of teams. The collages will be the first element of the portfolios.

Checking for Understanding: Teacher will float from group to group to check for understanding an evaluate the collages.

Closure: Teacher will ask students to begin thinking about what they like to do, their hobbies, favorite subjects, etc., and how their abilities/skills/preferences can contribute to the group.

Independent Practice: Students will brainstorm, on lined paper, their favorite activities and subjects; this will enter into the student portfolios.

Assessment: By the end of this lesson, students will have two things in their Unit folder; the collage and the brainstormed preferences/skills.

Homework: None

Lesson 2: Team Culture

Grade Level: 3

Duration: Days 2-4, 1 Hour Daily, 3 Hours Total

Subjects: Language and Visual Arts, Social Skills

Content Standards: Social Skill Standards: "3.4 Students understand the role of rules and laws in our daily lives and the basic structure of the U.S. government. Determine the reasons for rules, laws, and the U.S. Constitution; the role of citizenship in the promotion of rules and laws; and the consequences for people who violate rules and laws. Discuss the importance of public virtue and the role of citizens, including how to participate in a classroom, in the community, and in civic life." Language Arts Standards: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.

ELL Standards: Standards 1 and 2: The Language of Social Skills and the Language of Language Arts

Vocabulary: Culture, rules, laws, government

Materials: Lined Paper and Pencils, Construction Paper

Objectives:

1. FOLLOWING a social studies lesson on rules, laws, and government, the teacher will introduce the team as a small society/community.

Day 1:

2. The teacher will ask students to name some laws that are important in society, writing responses on white board.

3. The teacher will ask students to designate one student in the group to be the scribe, and write down suggestions for "team rules" (Included in Team Portfolio).

Day 2:

4. Teacher will review the previous day's content and introduce the Bill of Rights project.

5. Each team will create a Bill of Rights for their team members on construction paper, drawing from the previous day's rules discussion and name their teams (included in Team Portfolio).

6. Teams will present their Bill of Rights to class.

Day 3:

7. Teacher will review previous day's content and introduce "team culture."

8. Each team will discuss what is important to their team (ie. Honesty, trust, etc.).

9. Individually, students will write ten sentences about why their team is special (included in unit folders).

Checking for Understanding: The teacher will float from group to group to check for understanding and assess each of the day's content individually.

Closure: The teacher will summarize/synthesize the lesson by going around the room , acknowledging each team by name, and citing what is important to that team.

Independent Practice: See Number 9

Assessment: Student Unit Folders now include content from lessons 1 and 2; from lesson 2, the folders contain the "why my team is special." The team portfolios now include a bill of rights, team name, and team rules.

Homework: None

Lesson 3: Team Logo Project

Grade Level: 3

Duration: Day 5, 1 Hour

Subjects: Language and Visual Arts, Social Skills

Content Standards: Visual Arts: 5.3 Visual Literacy: Look at images in figurative works of art and predict what might happen next, telling what clues in the work support their ideas; 2.0 Creative Expression: Students apply artistic processes and skills....

ELL Standards: Standards 1 and 2: The Language of Social Skills and the Language of Language Arts

Vocabulary: Logos, Marketing, Brand.

Materials: Magazines, markers, construction paper, premade PowerPoint presentation on logos

Objectives:

1. Teacher will introduce various logos via slides and have students guess at their representation.

2. Teacher will have students begin looking at the visual elements of the logo (ie color, size, shape, line, etc.) and discuss how they make them feel.

3. Teacher will recount the team's names and elements from Lesson 2, giving teams time to brainstorm regarding how they could visually represent their team.

4. Teacher will designate one team member to be in charge of the color of the logo, one team member to be in charge of the size of the logo, one team member to be in charge of the shape of the logo, and one team member to be in charge of the slogan which will be associated with the logo.

5. Students will have thirty minutes to design their logos on construction paper and include in the team portfolio.

Checking for Understanding: During the brainstorming session and logo-creation, the teacher will move between groups to check for understanding.

Closure: The teacher will briefly move through all teams and have them present their logos with their chosen slogan.
Independent Practice: See Homework.

Assessment: The team portfolios will now contain the logo and the slogan from this lesson, while the individual unit folders/portfolios will contain the following homework.

Homework: Students will, over the weekend, create their own personal logo and slogan.

Lesson 4: Team Diversity and Leadership Project

Grade Level: 3

Duration: Week 2: Days 1-5

Subjects: Language and Visual Arts, Social Skills

Content Standards: Language Arts: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking; Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing. Social Studies: 3.3 Students draw from historical and community resources to organize the sequence of local historical events and describe how each period of settlement left its mark on the land.

ELL Standards: Standards 1 and 2: The Language of Social Skills and the Language of Language Arts

Vocabulary: Leadership, Communication, Diversity, Mission

Materials: Construction paper, drawing materials, PowerPoint Presentation on Leaders, building blocks, trash bags, computers for each team with internet access.

Objectives:

Day 1:

1. Teacher will present a wide range of relevant leaders within communities, drawing from a Social Studies lesson regarding community formation (see Standards).

2. Students will be asked to discuss what makes a good leader.

3. Individually, students will write one paragraph beginning with the prompt "I am a good leader because...".

Day 2:

4. Teacher will review leadership, and have students review the content from lesson one regarding their unique abilities/skills/attributes.

5. Teacher will cite that each of the next days within the lesson will have a different group member as "leader," with each day focused upon one activity that the day's leader will direct.

6. Teacher designates the leader for each group for Day 2.

7. Teacher cites that the activity for the day is to construct a building out of blocks (the building can be framed as the team community's "center/capitol/etc.")

8. Leaders will lead the activity within the groups, and the teams will end the activity by reflecting on the leadership of the group (the leader will write a self-evaluation, and all team members will write a peer evaluation).

Day 3:

9. Teacher designates a new leader for Day 3 and introduces the next task.

10. Day 3's task is to clean a designated portion of the playground (pick up trash, etc.).

11. The leader will lead this task, and the teams will end the activity by reflecting on the leadership of the group (the leader will write a self-evaluation, and all team members will write a peer evaluation).

Day 4:

12. Teacher designates a new leader for Day 4 and introduces the next task.

13. Day 4's task is to conduct an internet search on a local community/neighborhood (history, places of interest, etc.) and prepare a very brief report.

14. The leader will lead this task, and the teams will end the activity by reflecting on the leadership of the group (the leader will write a self-evaluation, and all team members will write a peer evaluation).

Day 5:

15. On this final day of the leadership lesson, the teacher will designate a new leader for Day 5 and introduce the final leadership task.

16. Day 5's task is to assess/brainstorm issues which really matter to a local community (for instance, a local community center closing, a community garden opening, etc.) and compile a list of these issues.

17. The leader will lead this task, and the teams will end the activity by reflecting on the leadership of the group (the leader will write a self-evaluation, and all team members will write a peer evaluation).

Checking for Understanding: The teacher will be very involved in moving between the groups in order to ensure students understand all four tasks. The peer/self evaluations will be reviewed as well in order to check for understanding.

Closure: The teacher will close this task by offering all students a "Leadership Certificate" and reading some of the positive peer comments on their leadership skills.

Independent Practice: Peer and Self Reviews are conducted independently each day.

Assessment: Contained within the student portfolio by the end of this lesson will be peer and self reviews as well as the "I am a good leader because" writing. The team portfolio will contain the community assessment projects from Day 4 and the community issues project from Day 5.

Homework: None

Lesson 5: Team Community Project

Grade Level: 3

Duration: Week 3: Days 1-5, 1 Hour each day

Subjects: Language and Visual Arts, Social Skills

Content Standards: Language Arts: Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking; Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing. Social Studies: 3.3 Students draw from historical and community resources to organize the sequence of local historical events and describe how each period of settlement left its mark on the land.

ELL Standards: Standards 1 and 2: The Language of Social Skills and the Language of Language Arts

Vocabulary: Strategy, Mission, Presentation, Plan

Materials: Construction paper, writing materials, computers with internet access for each team,

Objectives:

Day 1:

1. Teacher will review dominant concepts from unit thus far, including the leadership issues from the previous week, the culture of the team, and the importance of team diversity.

2. Teacher will present the lesson for the week by citing that all teams will create a community goal that addresses one of the issues from Day 5 of Lesson 4. The teams will then brainstorm about what issue they will be working with throughout the week.

3. Individually, students will write about their team's issue (ie. The community garden is important to me because...".

Day 2:

4. Teacher will present various mission statements for companies/organizations.

5. Teacher will ask all teams to write a mission for their project, using their team's name.

6. Teams will present their missions.

Days 3 and 4:

7. Teacher will present various strategic plans (simple) and discuss the importance of plans when seeking to achieve a given goal.

8. Teacher will ask teams to create a ten-step plan for achieving their goal, with this plan recorded on paper to be included in the portfolio.

9. Teams will assemble their team's portfolios in preparation for the final presentations the next day.

Day 5:

10. All teams will present their portfolios to the class, discuss their strategy and plans for achieving their community goal.

11. Individually, students will write final reviews on the team experience, responding to the prompts "I liked the team lessons because/ I did not like the team lessons because"

Checking for Understanding: The teacher will move around the room throughout the five days in order to ensure understanding and, most saliently, ensure that students are choosing reasonable goals and strategies.

Closure: The lesson will close by all teams receiving a "Teamwork Reward"

Independent Practice: See numbers 3 and 11.

Assessment: At the conclusion of the Unit, the teacher will grade the team portfolios which contain all of the team-specific work as well as the student's individual folders. The teacher will give a team grade as well as an individual grade to each student, equally weighted.

Team Portfolio:

- Lesson 2 Bill of Rights, Team name, Team rules
- Lesson 3 Logo and Slogan
- Lesson 4 Community Brainstorming and Issues list from Days 4 and 5
- Lesson 5 Mission and 10-Step Plan

Individual Student Folders:

- Lesson I Collage and Preferences List (2 Items)
- Lesson 2 "Why my team is special"
- Lesson 3 personal logo and slogan
- Lesson 4 peer and self-reviews on leadership experience and "I am a good leader because" exercise
- Lesson 5 assignment on why the community project is personally important

Homework: None



Forum / Free Essays / Unit Plan Research: Learning Teamwork and Lesson Plan for a Third-Grade Classroom

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