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Pride in Diversity - Our Similarities and Differences Make Us Strong

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Keywords: diversity, digital cameras, web design, language, collaborative
Subject(s): English/Language Arts, Technology
Grades K through 8
Original Author: Carol Gockman, Park Forest
Our grade K-8 school is rich in racial diversity and variety of cultural backgrounds. We are also fortunate to have parents who are highly involved and supportive of their children’s education and our school. This project will highlight these strengths – both to the families of our school community and to the community at large.

Topic/Focus: Pride in Diversity

· All students will find similarities and differences between themselves and a partner using a digital photograph to illustrate them.
· Middle school students will use Multimedia Lab to create a multi-grade interactive multimedia presentation using the digital photos, highlighting our similarities and stressing the positive impact diversity has on our school.

Digital cameras and software to download images to computer; props for students to wear or hold in photos such as a variety of hats, scarves, neckties, glasses, sports balls and helmets, play food items, cheerleader pompoms, and books; Multimedia Lab software and computers; photo paper and card stock to make grade level hard copy photo books; a photo quality printer, CD-RW’s to save projects.

Lesson Introduction:
In each separate class (K-8) teacher will lead a discussion of what it means to be different and be the same. We first will examine objects that are different and the same, and then discuss how people are different and the same. Where people are concerned, we will talk about how many of the ways we are similar and different cannot be seen.

Kindergarten and First Grade Students will be paired up and given a few minutes to talk with each other to find something about them that is different, and something that they have in common. They will then be allowed to choose a prop illustrating a similarity and difference if possible (such as both wearing a baseball cap if they both like baseball, or one student holding a baseball and the other holding a football if they prefer different sports) and the teacher will take a picture of both children wearing/holding the prop. One student will record the statement, “We are different because…” and the other student in the pair will record the statement, “We are the same because…”.

Second Grade through Eighth Grade students will do the same thing, except they will be allowed to take the photos themselves, under teacher supervision. Again, each student pair will record statements about what they found to be different and the same about themselves.

Sixth through Eighth Grade students will be given the assignment of writing a brief paragraph about how the diversity of student race, religion, cultural background, hopes and dreams, all contribute to the strength and richness of our school as a whole. They will then edit and record these paragraphs to be used as introductions and conclusions for each grade level's section of our multimedia presentation.

Finally, our middle school students will use Multimedia Lab to create the presentation that will be available on our school website entitled, “Our Diversity Makes Us Strong”. It will be divided by grade level so that parents wishing to specifically see their own child may go directly to that grade.

The final product will consist of a web page divided into sections for kindergarten, first grade, second grade and so on. Within each section will be the audio introduction, the photos of each student pair along with their recordings, and an audio conclusion.

In addition to the Multimedia Lab web page, a hard copy of each grade level’s students photos and responses will be bound into a classroom book to be available for students to look at and read again and again.

Materials: Digital SLR, Word Processor, Web Page, xD Memory Cards
Other Items: 3 128K Olympus xD picture cards, $30.00 each, total of $90.00
1 50 pack CD-RWs, $18.00 each, total of $18.00
16 25 sheet packages Kodak picture paper, $10.00 each, total of $160.00
1 Card Stock, $10.00 each, total of $10.00
1 Olympus P10 Digital Dye-Sub Photo Printer, $150.00 each, total of $150.00
Props, $72.00 each