Beacon Unit Plan Library

Where's the Heart of Florida?

Julie Thompson
Beacon Learning Center (Bay District Schools)

Description

Should the capital of the state of Florida remain where it is in the 21st century? Would another location better represent the "heart of Florida?" In this Problem-Based Learning (PBL) unit, students engage in an authentic setting to research the history of the current state capital and examine the possibility of a new location for the state capital that perhaps better reflects the changing face of Florida, politically, economically, culturally, socially, and geographically. Charged by the governor in this simulation, students act as a task force to inquire and propose possible sites as the "heart of Florida" capital of the twenty-first century according to the stated criteria.

Questions

Where is the heart of Florida in the 21st century?
How has the face of Florida changed over time since Tallahassee was established as the state capital?
How do political, economical, cultural, social, and geographical changes influence one another?

Duration

The planned duration of this activity is 11 days.

Associated Files

Unit Plan Overview (PDF)     File Extension:  pdf

Diagnostic Assessment (PDF)     File Extension:  pdf

Summative Assessment #1 (PDF)     File Extension:  pdf

Summative Assessment #2 (PDF)     File Extension:  pdf

Lesson Plans

Memo from the Governor
Students receive a mock memo from the governor, setting the stage for inquiry into the history of Florida's capital and for proposing sites for a "heart of Florida" capital. This engagement activity introduces students to a Problem-Based Learning unit.

Navigating Through Capital History
Students research the history of Tallahassee using a Website and other materials to determine why the capital is where it is today. Students organize the information on a timeline and investigate the question, Where's the heart of Florida?

What's the Problem?
Students redefine the problem of Where's the Heart of Florida? and begin to formulate possible solutions using graphic organizers.

Mapping Possible Solutions
Where is the heart of Florida now that we have entered the 21st century? Students propose possible sites for the heart of Florida state capital by mapping collected data onto a Florida state map and recording data in a Travel Log.

Consider This!
Students draft a simulated email to the governor of Florida that includes their recommendation for the -heart of Florida- capital and provides support based upon research and established criteria.

Top Secret Sensitive Information
Students play the role of detectives and develop criteria to evaluate sites for the heart of Florida capital. To do this, they use teacher made TOP SECRET folders with information that represents diverse cultural perspectives and state maps.

Web Links

Students discover the unique and diverse culture of Florida as they take a look at the faces of the people who live there.
The Face of Florida

Problem Based Learning Information
Problem Based Learning Information

Problem Based Learning Information
Problem Based Learning Information

Problem Based Learning Information
Problem Based Learning Information

Problem Based Learning Information
Problem Based Learning Information

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