Beacon Lesson Plan Library
A Colony is Born : Lesson 3 - Marking Time
Bay District Schools
This lesson swiftly travels through time from 1492 to 1607. Significant events are marked on a timeline, note taking is modeled, and a focus on reasons for leaving England for the New World is clarified with the use of a graphic organizer.
The student extends previously learned knowledge and skills of the fourth grade level with increasingly complex reading texts and assignments and tasks (for example, explicit and implicit ideas).
The student reads and organizes information from multiple sources for a variety of purposes (for example, supporting opinions, predictions, and conclusions; writing a research report; conducting interviews; taking a test; performing tasks).
The student constructs and labels a timeline based on a historical reading (for example, about United States history).
The student knows significant events in the colonization of North America, including but not limited to the Jamestown and Plymouth settlements, and the formation of the thirteen original colonies.
The student understands selected aspects of everyday life in Colonial America (for example, impact of religions, types of work, use of land, leisure activities, relations with Native Americans, slavery).
Note: Students should have background knowledge of timelines and a basic understanding of how they are created.
- A classroom timeline mounted on a wall. This should be permanent for the duration of the unit.
- Ten markers for the events that will be recorded on the timeline during this lesson. (For example, you may want to have small sailing ships with an event and year printed on each one so they can be attached to the classroom timeline.)
- Individual timelines for the students, void of events and dates so that they can add them as the unit progresses, hole punched.
- Copies of Web site text covering the reasons colonists left England for the New World for guided reading, hole punched. (See Web links)
- Copies of the narrative timeline for the dates 1492 - 1607, hole punched. (See Web links)
- Copies of web page text for Christopher Columbus, John Cabot, and Amerigo Vespucci, hole punched. (See Web links)
- Individual map for each student, hole punched.
- Copies of the graphic organizer for each student, hole punched.
- Four transparency copies of the graphic organizer.
- Transparency of map complete with selected sites, routes, etc., marked correctly.
- Overhead projector
- Vis-à-vis markers
- Students should have their Colonial Notebooks
- A tape of early colonial America music
- Two colored construction pieces to fill two sections of the cargo hull of the bulletin board ship
(1) Prepare ahead of time, and mount to the wall a timeline long enough to record the span of colonial time from 1492 to 1700.
(2) Make ten markers for the events that will be recorded on the timeline during this lesson. (For example, you may want to have small sailing ships with an event and year printed on each one so they can be attached to the classroom timeline.)
(3) Supply each student with a long sheet of paper. It must be sufficiently long enough to create a timeline for the duration of the unit. I suggest using a legal sized piece of paper folded and hole punched so that it can be kept in the Timeline section of their notebooks. Students will remove and unfold it each time they add something to it.
(4) Make hole-punched copies for each student of the following items:
(a) text for guided reading
(b) narrative timeline for the dates 1492 – 1607
(c) text for Christopher Columbus, John Cabot, and Amerigo Vespucci, hole punched.
(d) Map (In Associated File)
(e) Graphic organizer (In Associated File)
(5) Make four transparency copies of the graphic organizer for you to use as feedback for student note taking.
(6) Transparency of the map with the West Indies (Columbus), the coast of Canada (John Cabot), the coast of America (Amerigo Vespucci), England, Roanoke, and Jamestown, marked correctly to use as feedback.
7) Gather these items together:
(a) Overhead projector,
(c) Vis-à-vis markers,
(d) Tape of early colonial America music, and
(e) Two colored construction pieces to fill two sections of the cargo hull of the bulletin board ship.
(8) Have an area to conduct small, guided-reading groups.
(9) Plan center activities for children when their guided reading groups are not meeting.
Note: If you are interested in completing the entire Unit Plan: A Colony Is Born, please see the Extensions for more information.
Note: Students have already been taught to read and interpret a timeline in third grade. If students have not yet been taught to construct and label a timeline (fifth grade GLE), the instructional time for steps 1 - 7 of this lesson may need to be extended.
TIME NOTE: Steps 1 - 7 should go very quickly. The text that students are asked to read is both brief and shared among many. These steps are refreshing knowledge students already have and are setting the stage for understanding why colonists were willing to leave England. Remember, explorers and their accomplishments are not the standards being taught, so do not spend lots of time with details. Labeling a timeline is being taught. You are priming the pump. Note, too, that one time-saving tip is suggested, and that is to have students complete and check their timelines and maps as a center activity. That way you are not using teaching time for self checking.
(1) Get students' attention by playing a recording of period music. Once they are listening, start marking time by clapping to the music.
(2) Say to students: We have been marking time to the music of early America by clapping. There are other ways to mark time. One other way is on a timeline. We will be creating a timeline to record events in history during the time period known as the colonial period. We will be creating one for classroom display. At the same time, you will be responsible for creating a personal one in your notebook. We will investigate through reading primary and secondary sources, reasons and significant events that led Englanders to come to the New World. We’ll locate and mark on a map where some of these significant events took place. Today’s cargo is a double load for our ship. We will be loading significant events from 1492 to 1606 and reasons for leaving England and coming to the New World.
(3) Pass out to each student:
Copy of the individual timeline
Copy of the narrative timeline from 1492 – 1607 (See Web links)
Copy of short passages on the three explorers (See Web links)
Copy of a map that shows North America and Europe. (See Associated File)
(4) Give directions that allow time for the students to independently read, interpret, and record the significant events that are presented in the narrative timeline,
using a pencil on their personal timeline,
(5) Lead a class feedback session on the presented events. Call on various students to state the event, share where they placed it on their timelines, make adjustments if necessary, and then add the event to the classroom timeline. Have students identify what type of source was used for the information, primary or secondary? Get all students involved. There are enough events and sharing opportunities to have everyone have some part of this feedback. Boom around the room quickly and keep the pace of the feedback rapid enough to keep it interesting, yet slow enough for students to mark their timelines.
(6) Using what is learned from the text of the narrative timeline and information from the passages on the three explorers, have students work with their neighbors to mark on their individual maps the location of the West Indies (Columbus), coast of Canada (John Cabot), the coast of America (Amerigo Vespucci), England, Roanoke, and Jamestown. There should be some discussion here about what is inferred in the text.
(7) Walk around the room guiding student response. For feedback, put a copy of a correctly completed map on the overhead . Allow students to correct and make any necessary adjustments to their own individual maps. Ask them where they think these pages will go in the notebook to get them thinking in organizational fashion. They need to know that the timeline and accompanying text should be placed in the Timeline portion of their notebook. Explain that it is part of both the Resource Manager requirements and Information Manager requirements stated at the front of the notebooks, that they will need it to refer to at other times, and it will be part of their assessment.
NOTE: LEARNING CENTER ACTIVITY: As you are conducting small guided reading groups at other times of the day and week, students can visit a Learning Center to work on completing their maps by creating a key and symbols for it. Also, you can print these two questions on sentence strip, tape or hang them at the Learning Center. Have students write their responses on notebook paper and file in the Noteworthy Information section of their notebooks. Why was the land discovery dubbed and referred to as the New World? Why was it named America?
Now that the the stage has been set and a timeline started, Steps 8 - 15 has students addressing the reasons colonists left England to go to the New World. NOTE: If the class needed extended time to learn how to mark a timeline, and if time is an issue, it would be appropriate to end the lesson now and do steps 8 - 15 during another time period on the same day or on the following day.
(8) Discuss with students that we know what exploration was taking place, and leading up to colonists arriving on the shores of North America, but why did people want to leave their homeland for a New World? Who would want to leave towns and villages with families and friends and journey into the unknown wild wilderness? What would cause people to settle in the New World?
(9) Pass out to each student:
- Copy of the teacher selected text. (See Web links.) covering reasons colonists left England for the New World (See Extensions and Modifications section for ideas on how this reading could be achieved).
- Copy of the graphic organizer, Why Did the Colonists Leave England for the New World? (In Associated File)
(10) Divide class into four small, guided reading groups. As you meet with each group, they are given one paragraph of the text (www7.bcity.com/history/earlycol.htm) to read. They are reading with the purpose to find out one reason that colonists came to the New World and a bit of detail about it. Guide each group through reading and discussing their paragraphs so as to conclude a reason for leaving, accompanied by supportive detail. As the group comes to consensus, record the ideas on one of the graphic organizer transparencies. (Use a different transparency for each group. This will be easier for the class to read and check their notes on their own graphic organizers as each group presents what they read, and it will assure that all students have the correct ideas down that you want them to have.)
NOTE: One activity center that students can be visiting during the small group guided reading lessons is the Student Web Lesson: Treasures from the Past. This Student Web lesson supports the focus of the graphic organizer.
(11) Pair and Share Activity: At this point, have groups 1 and 2 meet together, and 3 and 4 meet together. The directions are to share with the other group the reasons for leaving England that your group read about. Students in the paired groups will fill in the reason with supportive details on their graphic organizers.
(12) Rotate groups. Groups 1 and 3 Pair and Share. Groups 2 and 4 Pair and Share following the same procedure in number 11 above.
(13) Rotate groups. Groups 1 and 4 Pair and Share Groups 2 and 3 Pair and Share following the same procedure in number 11 above.
(14) Feedback: Students check the reasons and supportive details they have written on their papers from meetings with the other groups as you present each on the overhead from the transparencies completed as you met with each guided reading group. Be sure to explain that what they have been doing is a form of note taking and that it is a way we jot down the important things we learn and a way to organize information so that we will have it to refer. They need to know that this completed organizer and the accompanying text should be placed in the Noteworthy Information portion of their notebook. Explain that it is part of the Resource Manager requirements stated at the front of the notebook, that they will need it to refer to at other times, and it will be part of their assessment. (Just an idea . . .have a few extra graphic organizers on hand. Some students may need to do a lot of erasing, and it may be easier to just hand them another clean sheet.)
(15) We have loaded more cargo into the hull of our ship of knowledge. Let’s celebrate all our work we did today by filling two more sections in our ship, one for Significant Events Leading to Colonization, and another for Reasons Colonists Left England. Choose a couple of students to each attach the corresponding color piece for the two designated sections.
These formative assessments lead to summatives at the end of the Unit Plan: A Colony Is Born.
The Timeline will formatively assess the students.
FOR SCORING: To assess if a student is successful and to what level, check the timeline for accuracy of identifying significant events and properly placing and labeling each on the timeline.
The Graphic Organizer will formatively assess students.
FOR SCORING: To assess if a student is successful and to what level, check the accuracy of identifying the four reasons for leaving England for the New World and the bit of detail about each that is required by the graphic organizer.
The Notebook will formatively assess the students’ abilities.
FOR SCORING: To assess if a student is successful and to what level, check the notebook for accuracy of placing handouts within the proper tab of the notebook and in the correct order within that section.
The reading of the text to acquire the information needed to complete the formative assessments may be handled in two ways. Ideally, it should be delivered as a guided-reading lesson to small groups, each group addressing one of the four paragraphs and focusing on one of the reasons for leaving England and coming to the New World. Each group will be afforded a reciprocal teaching experience by telling other groups about the reason for colonists leaving that they read about. Alternatively, it could be instructed as a whole group guided reading lesson. A copy of the graphic organizers with the reason and detail will be used as a visual aid and for feedback to the class on how well they completed their graphic organizers and are presented on overhead to the entire class. Alternatively, checking their entries with the exemplar could be a center activity.
Modification for the Pair and Share Activity
As the groups move from buddy group to buddy group, rather than have them re-teaching just their focus reason with supportive detail, they must also present the reason and detail they just learned from the group before. (For example, Group 1 pairs with Group 2, each teaching the other the reason that they read about. When Group 1 moves to pair with Group 3, they teach their focus reason, and re-teach the reason and supportive detail they learned from Group 2. Group 2 will teach their reason to Group 4, and re-teach the reason they learned from Group 1, etc.
Learning Center Activity
As you are conducting small guided reading groups at other times of the day and week, students can visit a Learning Center to work on completing their maps by creating a key and symbols for it. Also, you can print these two questions on sentence strip, tape or hang them at the Learning Center, and have students write their response on notebook paper and file in the Noteworthy Information section of their notebooks. Why was the land discovery dubbed and referred to as the “New World”? Why was it named America?
The Student Web Lesson: Treasures from the Past is a source for students to use for validation and scaffolding of the ideas behind the reasons for the colonists to leave England and come to the New World. This is another great center activity for students.
The Beacon Unit Plan associated with this lesson can be viewed by clicking on the link located at the top of this page or by using the following URL: http://www.beaconlearningcenter.com/search/details.asp?item=2962. Once you select the unit’s link, scroll to the bottom of the unit plan page to find the section, Associated Files. This section contains links to the Unit Plan Overview, Diagnostic and Summative Assessments, and other associated files (if any).