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Geography Postcard Podcasting

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Keywords: Podcasting, Social Studies, Road trip
Subject(s): Social Studies, Photography, Information Skills, Reading, Writing, Podcasting, Geography, Spelling, Grammar, History
Grades 7 through 8
School: Batchelder Elementary School, Hartford, CT
Planned By: Timothy Field
Original Author: Timothy Field, Hartford
Students will produce four postcards that will show the major landforms and describe the climate of the different regions of the U.S. and Canada. Students will then write a description of their travels in the form of a friendly letter. Students will first “pack a suitcase” for a journey by creating a list of five items that they might need to pack for each destination, explaining why they brought the items. First, the students will drive from Hartford to Atlanta, Georgia, which is an important southern city. Then they will drive out west to Denver, CO and then to Chicago, Illinois, which is in the Midwest. Finally, they will end their trip at Montreal, Quebec. Students will create a hand-drawn picture of an important landform from each of the regions they visit. For example, they can draw a picture of rivers, lakes or the landscape, such as farmland. Students will also include the names of the places within the illustration. The other side of the postcard will contain writing. Students will write to friends or family members describing the region that they are visiting and will answer the following questions on each postcard: 1. What is the climate like? 2. What major landforms and bodies of water do you see? 3. What outdoor activities do you do in this region? (Hiking, swimming, skiing) 4. How did the clothes and items you packed help you? 5) How is this region similar or different from the last one you visited? Each student will include his/her name at the end of each postcard. The final step of this lesson is for students to create podcasts using the postcards and letters, and post them onto the class website. Lastly, students will evaluate their classmates’ projects using a rubric while viewing the podcasts on the classroom website.
Podcasting equipment would be very useful to my classroom because we already use a lot of technology inside the classroom but we have limited source of funds and books. If we get podcasting equipment I can podcast all my lessons and this would help our student body out because we do have a lot of students who miss a lot of days of school because of medical reasons and they can check out the podcast and not fall behind.
Students would then answer the reflective summary. This makes the students reflect on what they just learned and how to make their projects better for next time.
Materials: Power, Computer Accessories, Memory Cards, Flash/USB Drives, Camera Bags, Camera/Video Accessories, Microscopes, Video Tools, Art Tools, Microphones, Digital Voice Recorders, Projectors, Digital Cameras, Flash Memory Camcorders, Video Cameras, Headsets, English/Language Arts, Social Studies, Podcasting, Web Page, Clip Art, Music, Student Resources