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The History of The White House

A lesson plan for teachers relating to the home of the President of United States of America. The White House has changed throughout the years, not only in design but also in terms of who has lived there. Essential Question (EQ): How has the White House physically changed throughout the years?

Title: The History of the White House

Subject/Topic: US Presidential History

Enduring Understandings:

The White House has changed throughout the years, not only in design but also in terms of who has lived there.

Essential Question (EQ):

How has the White House physically changed throughout the years?

Student Skills Utilized:

  • Ability to gather information from reference sources using computer technology
  • Capacity to compare and contrast persons, places, and idea
  • Capability to collaborate with others on assigned tasks
  • Facility to use computer technology to share information

Materials/Resources:

Access to classroom computers and the Internet, art supplies (poster board, construction paper, styrofoam, paints, blank paper, pencils, markers, crayons), Microsoft PowerPoint, and assessment rubrics

Introduction/Activating Hook:

Picture of the White House enlarged on the classroom projector.

Step-by Step Procedures:

  1. Teacher will ask students to raise their hands if they recognize the current building on the screen. Other pictures of White House through the years will be shared (at least 5 distinct pictures) and will lead into a discussion of the history of the White House.
  2. Teacher will ask essential question involving the physical changes of the White House
  3. Review of information found at http://www.whitehouse.gov/about/history in collaborative groups of 4 -5 students
  4. Students will be given choice of group alternative assessments
    1. PowerPoint presentation
    2. Poster Project and essay answering essential question
    3. Open House Invitation for public to view the White House (brochure describing layout and rooms of the White House inviting public to take tour)
    4. Model of the White House with brief essay

Tailor/Differentiation:

Lower functioning students will be paired with higher level students to motivate them. ESOL students will be placed in groups with at least two students who speak English as a first language.

Ongoing Evaluation:

Teacher will monitor students throughout the class period(s). Assessments will be measured according to rubrics distributed to students before they begin projects.

Closure/Summarizing:

Students will answer essential question through assessments. Students will also present projects to class.

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