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Capturing Change

Lesson Plan Item

General Information
Grade Kindergarten Class Social Studies Length of Lesson 40 Minutes
Lesson Title Capturing Change
Unit Title Identity
Unit Compelling Question How is everyone unique?
Historical Context:

We often hear stories from older generations about what their childhood was like. They might tell us about the clothes they wore, the games they played, and the food they ate. As younger generations hear stories they often laugh or simply smirk at the fact that it is much different than their own childhood. Each student has their own unique personality, but the environment and world around them highly affects them. Schools that were once one room school houses are now seen to be multiple story high buildings. Kids were required to wear a certain outfit to attend school, and now they just simply have to follow a dress code. School lunches and snacks were mich different than what kids are experiencing. What kids did for fun and for hobbies are now very different. Time has changed in America, and has new generations have come up things are starting to evolve and enhance. 

~ Allyson Simpson, Simpson College

2018.022.001  This photograph shows Frank Adler and two of his brothers, Ed and Walt, dressed in United States military uniform outfits.

Frank Adler, who later used the stage name Felix Adler, was born in Clinton, Iowa on June 17, 1895. At the age of 15, Adler began working as a comedian around the Clinton area. Sometime around 1914, Adler joined Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus. Shortly after, however, Adler left the circus and served in the Army during World War I.

In 1919, Adler returned to the circus and became "Funny Felix the Clown." During his career, Adler appeared in movies and TV shows including The Greatest Show on Earth (1952), The Jackie Gleason Show, Person to Person, Howdy Doody Show, Super Circus and Martin Kane Private Eye. He was the first American clown on television.

Adler also earned the nickname, "The Whitehouse Clown" for the many times he performed for United States presidents, including Warren Harding, Calvin Coolidge, and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

In 1948. Adler married Amelia Irwin, who also was a circus clown. The duo became the first husband and wife circus clown team. The pair retired from the circus in 1959.

Frank "Felix" Adler passed away on February 1, 1960 and was buried in Clinton, Iowa. To celebrate his life, the town of Clinton celebrates Felix Adler Day each June.

The first circus created in 1793 did not include clowns in its acts. However, with a need for a comedic part of the show, clowns soon became part of travelling shows, entertaining the audience with jokes, skits and performing scenarios that defied social norms. In the late 1800s, during a period of focus on child innocence and youth, clowns' identity became more focused on entertaining children. In addition to circus acts, books, magazines and other forms of publicity shared the carefree, clumsy character of clowns to a youth-centered audience. In the 1940s onward, children's television shows that featured clowns continued the cliche that had formed in the previous decades. Personas such as Clarabelle the Clown and Ronald McDonald were created to promote and advertise products towards children, and those who performed as clowns reached national popularity. It was not until the 1980s when clowns began to transform into the stereotype of the "scary clown", an idea that emerged with popular media such as the bestseller "It" by author Stephen King and horror movies based on clowns.

2018.009.024  This photo shows the five Wilson brothers, who each served in World War II, with the rest of their family. This photo, which was taken in November, 1941, was the last picture taken of the entire family before the brothers went to war.

The color photograph shows Leora Wilson with her surviving children and their spouses taken in 1976.

~ Matthew Miller, Teaching Iowa History Team
Lesson Supporting Question How are we different than people long ago?
Lesson Overview

Students will bring in and look at photo of families and see what their photo is saying about their lives (age, clothing, background, etc.). We will compare their photos to photos of children long ago. We will reflect on how our stories are different than students long ago and why our stories are so different or the same. 

Primary Sources Used
Resources Needed
Lesson Target
  • The Kindergarten students will be able to compare and contrast the differences between the photos that they bring to class to photos of children long ago. This will be measured by teacher observation and response to teacher scaffolding and questions.
  • The Kindergarten students will be able to construct their own responses to the compelling question from the pictures displayed during the lesson. This will be measured by having students write their answer on a piece of lined paper or in notes on the Ipad that will be shared to the teacher at the end of the lesson.
Lesson Themes No themes are assigned for this lesson.
Lesson Procedure
Step Procedure Time Differentiation plan / Additional Information
Bell Ringer

This lesson is based towards the end of the year. 
I will ask the students if they know what the word “unique” means? 
Students will be asked to write on a piece of lined paper what they think the word “unique” means. 
We will share at the front of the class some of the answers before I tell them. 
Also informing students that being unique is what makes them, “them”. 
Come up together as a class list of what makes the class (you, me, and other students) different from each other. 

Introduce that we will be talking about how people are unique. 
5 Min Not all students will be able to bring in a picture. If student is not able to bring in photo of themselves/family, have students draw a picture of themselves with their family. This still give student a chance to create their own story.  If student is not able to  write based on injury or special needs, I will assign another student to help write what child is wanting to write down but cannot. 

I will ask students to look on the board of a projected picture of myself and family.
We will brainstorm as a class with what makes me “unique”/ tells my “story”.
I will write on the board some of the big ideas that students have.

Tell students that they will be doing this but with their own photo. Students will be asked to go back to their desks to grab their things.
7 Min  

Students will be asked to partner up with a piece of paper, pencil, and their paper. 

A student will be writing while another student will be discussing things about themselves in the photo then the students switch.
10 Min Students can make list’s instead of writing full sentences for this part of the lesson. If student is not able to write based on injury or special needs, I will assign another student to help write what child is wanting to write down but cannot.
Transition After students have spent time with their partners discussing about their photos, I will ask them to gather their supplies and go put it on their desk.  3 Min  

Students will come gather to the carpet area where I will have projected the two photos from Iowa Museum’s website showing the first one a set of kids and the second one a family. 
As students are seated I will tell them to think-pair-share to someone next to them about what they notice about each of these pictures (clothing, background, family, etc.).
 We will come back as a class and discuss the many different traits that students were able to come up with and use the clues from the pictures to come up with these ideas. 

We will compare our photos to the photos that I have shown them out loud as a class. 
7 Min If students are not able to sit on carpet due to behaviorally issues, injury, or special needs they can sit around the carpet in chair or with what their needs can be met with. If there are not enough partners, students can talk in group of 3’s or with the teacher/associate. 

Staying in their groups students I will ask the students how they are different from people all over.

Each person will write or type out the sentence of what makes them unique and draw a picture to describe the sentence.
7 Min I will have written on the board 
“------ makes me unique.” So students can come and copy the ending of the sentence. There will also be the letters posted around the room as well teachers going around and helping students sound out words. I will also have an example on the board of a sentence from my picture that to give students an idea of what I am wanting them to do. Students at this time are also able to ask for help from other students on sounding out words and ideas.
Transition The students will come show the teacher what they have written and the picture that they have drawn. After this, they will turn in or airdrop their notes to the teacher.  3 Min This is the assessment part of the lesson. All students will turn in a written part and the picture they have created. 
Closure To end this lesson, I will have students that want to share with the class about something that made them unique from their photo that they brought. 5 Min  
Formative Assessment
(How will you use the formative assessments to monitor and inform instruction?)
  • I am assessing the students by taking anecdotal notes of students responses to a set of questions that I will be asking after looking at the two pictures and looking at their own documents. I will also be assessing the students’ knowledge by having them write and draw a picture about what it meant to be unique form their photos that they brought. I will use both assessments to help with teaching the next lesson. As well as knowing if I need to go back and re-teach the lesson differently if students were not understanding it after reading their papers.
Summative Assessment
(How does the lesson connect to planned summative assessment(s)?)
  • This lesson is a build up to a summative assessment. At such a young age, I wanted to only focus on one large standard and break it down for them in a fun an exciting way. This lesson focuses on comparing life in the past to life today which is only one of the 19 standard’s that Kindergarten has which is why it is a helpful tool to build up to the “midterm”.
Author Information
Author Kara Campfield Reviewer Dr. Chad Timm, Simpson College Created 08/17/2019 Last Edited 09/06/2019
Lesson Plan Development Notes: Social Studies Methods, Simpson College, Spring 2019

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