Oregon’s Government Investigation

Oregon gov investigation

Title: Oregon Government Investigation

Subject: Social Studies & Writing – Oregon’s Government

Grade Level: Fourth Grade

Learning Goal:
Students will collaborate, discuss, investigate, research and learn about Oregon’s state government.

Content Standard:
EL.04.WR.01 Use a variety of strategies to prepare for writing, such as brainstorming, making lists, mapping, outlining, grouping related ideas, using graphic organizers, and taking notes.
EL.04.WR.04 Choose the form of writing that best suits the intended purpose–personal letter, letter to the editor, review, poem, report, or narrative.
EL.04.WR.06 Focus on a central idea, excluding loosely related, extraneous, and repetitious information.
EL.04.WR.08 Revise drafts by combining and moving sentences and paragraphs to improve the focus and progression of ideas.
EL.04.WR.08 Revise drafts by combining and moving sentences and paragraphs to improve the focus and progression of ideas.
NETS-S Standard:
#2 Communication and Collaboration
#3 Research and Information Fluency
#4 Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making

Materials and Resources Needed:
Half/Half Configuration for Computers (Two students will share one computer/laptop.)
Teacher Pick-up Box/Drop Box
Inspiration Investigation Template

Summary of Instructional Technology Strategies Used:
Develop templates to target learning activities and make the most of instructional time
Chunk technology instruction into mini lessons throughout class time
Identify and take advantage of teachable technology moments
Narrow the options/choices for students within a particular program
Include writing (draft, revise, and edit) in technology activities

Lesson Steps:
Prior to Lesson:

Provide the template in your Pick-up Box for students to open.

Tell students they will be learning about Oregon’s state government through an investigation. Go through the template with your whole class. Review the task for each segment of the investigation. Show students how to use the “magic mountains” to zoom in and out. Show students how to access the Internet site and the movie.
Between computer partners, one student will be oval and the other one rectangle. When the oval partner is responding, the rectangle partner is the only one who will be typing the response, and vice versa.
First time using an Investigation, do each segment together as a whole class putting a time limit for each one.
Everyone type both partners names and “clamshell”.
“Unclam” and students look closely, using the magic mountains, to explore the counties of Oregon. Give them about five minutes to observe and type the responses. Tell them to clamshell when done.
Have them “unclam” and watch the video about Oregon’s government. Using your own judgment and pacing, give students enough time to complete this segment of the Investigation. Clamshell when done.
Have them “unclam” and explore the Internet site about Oregon’s government. Again, using your judgment, give students enough time to complete the website segment.
Last step is for them to print one copy of their partner created Investigation.

Day 2: Students will use their Investigation page and/or open the Investigation window on their computer/laptop to write two paragraphs about Oregon’s state government.
The first paragraph talks about the role and/or importance of Oregon’s government. The second paragraph must include details about the three branches.
Write one example together as a class. Discuss a good hook for your topic sentence. Inform the students the topic sentence should not only hook your audience, but also introduce what the paragraph will be about. This can be taken to another level too by discussing sentence fluency, sentence beginnings, and/or concluding sentences.
Have the same partners from the previous day work together to write two paragraphs about Oregon’s government in Microsoft Word. Throughout the lesson, have students share examples of great starters and/or whole paragraphs. If any of the options above were taught as well, have students share those too.
Options: Give students parameters for font size. Allow one minute for them to select font size and/or font style.
Last step, students print two copies of their paragraphs for Oregon state reports.

Assessment:  Using the Oregon State Writing Rubric, score students’ paragraphs and conference with partners.

Reflection:  I loved this lesson and I thought the paragraphs went really well, especially after students had the time to learn through the Investigation.



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