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The West Virginia State Museum at The Culture Center


Fifth Grade Lesson Plans

Constructivism Resources and Videos Complete PDF

*NOTICE*
Some of the following Lesson Plans have links to additional information with in them and at the time of their creation the links functioned correctly. Over time some of the links may not be maintained by their creators or may be taken down.


Pathway Programs

1. "A Sense of West Virginia" for grades 4th through 8th.

Students are time travelers on a journey. Their job is to experience all the sights, sounds, and various senses encountered in the time periods of the museum. They will have to report back to their peers about their findings. This lesson will provide historical perspective. Through this lesson, the students will be enabled to relate history to their life today. As teacher leaders of WV, we would expect this lesson to result in historical empathy and an understanding of the time periods. We expect the activity to provide students with a better sense of self (their culture, their history, their environment) in hope that it will provide knowledge and understanding of where they are going. (4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th grades)

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2. "Where Will I Go From Here?" for grades 4th through 8th.

Students will follow the WV Museum Showpath, considering how West Virginians in the past have been challenged to make a life here. Using the WV Museum as a gateway, student groups will acquire knowledge of their past to critically evaluate and plan for their future. This will give students the opportunity to explore how West Virginians in the past have survived, and give them the opportunity to imagine and analyze where they, as citizens of WV, can find their place and create their own history. (4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th grades)

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4. "In the Footsteps of West Virginia" for grades 5th and 8th.

Students will complete a project in the persona of a fictional character from an historical era. This lesson provides for differentiation based on differing materials, different activities while at the museum, and different final projects. This is a way to expand the students' knowledge of specific eras in WV history while personalizing the content. This lesson will enable students to consider history from different viewpoints. Puts the students "in the shoes" of fictional characters from various historical periods to challenge their decision making processes. (5th, 8th grades)

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Frontier

2. "Women's Roles: Then and Now" for 4th grade.

Students will study the roles that women played on the Appalachian frontier and compare them to women's roles today. Students will see how far women have come in gaining opportunities as well as how life has changed in general during the two hundred years since white settlers came to the western Virginia frontier. This lesson is intended to show students how much women's roles have changed - and how much they haven't. (4th grade - Discovery Room 4)

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Civil War & The 35th State

2. "My Brother, My Enemy" for 4th and 5th grades.

Students will explore West Virginia's role in the Civil War, especially how families were frequently divided by their loyalty to both the North and the South. Using several activities and a trip through the WV Museum, students will create a newsletter and publish a newsletter to demonstrate their learning. Students should understand that West Virginia and its families played an important role in changing the nation. Soldiers and battles were fought in our yards where we walk today. Unfortunately, many of those soldiers were fighting neighbors and their own family members in a bloody battle to save our nation from itself. (4th, 5th grades - Discovery Room 6)

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3. "Morse Code Telegraph and West Virginia" for 5th, 7th and 8th grades.

Two inventions that revolutionized WV and the world were Morse Code and the telegraph. With teacher guidance and through discovery, students will realize how these communication tools help shape popular opinions and beliefs. As students view artifacts in the WV State Museum, they will gain a greater appreciation for these inventions, the time period of their greatest use, and how they were used in helping WV become a state. (5th, 7th, 8th grades - Wheeling Intelligencer's Office)

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4. "Concern in Eastern Virginia" for 5th, 7th and 8th grades.

Students are told an heir to a prominent 1800's legislature comes across a very interesting keepsake. Along with his great-great uncle's obituary, he finds attached a piece of paper headed, "Items to take to western Virginia." Along with a listing of several items, at the bottom of the page in different handwriting he reads, "John's last words." Students will use this information during their visit to the WV State Museum to decide why the uncle was moving to West Virginia, whey he was taking these items, and what this information has to do with WV Statehood. Inevitably, when asked why WV separated from Virginia, most people will target slavery as the cause of the rift. This lesson questions this assertion and allows students to uncover facts that factually substantiate reasons for WV separating from Virginia.(5th, 7th, 8th grades - Discovery Room 7 & 8)

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Industrialization

10. "The "Coal Lifecycle" Scrapbook" for 5th and 6th grades.

After studying the coal industry and/ or carbon cycle and a visit to the WV State Museum students are told a lump of coal has come to the classroom with amnesia. He doesn't know who he is, where he came from, or what he is supposed to do. It is their job to help him! To assist him, students will create a scrapbook of "Coal's Lifecycle" to jog his memory. (5th, 6th grades - Discovery Rooms 12,13, 14 & 15)

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11. "Is Charleston Your Lucky Charm?" for 4th through 8th grades.

Students will learn the history of the location of West Virginia's state capitol. Students take the role of young citizens living in the city of Charleston in the new state of West Virginia. The decision to choose the capitol city is up for vote, students will research and choose which city they will vote for - Charleston or Wheeling? ((4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th grades - Discovery Room 16)

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Change and Tradition

1. "How Does it Feel? (Civil Rights)" for 5th grade.

Civil Rights have always been at the forefront of importance in West Virginia history. The Civil Rights movement of the 1960s got its start from sit-ins in soda shops throughout the state. The class is a segregated society. One group gets more space, the best supplies and equipment, as well as making all the decisions for the entire class. The other group must work with less space, fewer supplies, and no input in the decision making process. This lesson puts students in the footsteps of people of the past and helps them to understand how it felt. (5th grade - Discovery Room 21 & Showpath)

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2. "Reporting Live From." for 5th through 8th grades.

West Virginia has had both natural and man-made disasters throughout its history. In the wake of many of these disasters, new safety regulations and precautions have been implemented. The student becomes a reporter covering a West Virginia disaster through research and a visit to the WV State Museum. (5th, 6th, 7th, 8th grades - Discovery Room 21)

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4. "Art Critic for a Day" for 4th through 8th grades.

Students need to use critical thinking skills in all areas of their life. They need to use these skills to evaluate many aspects of our world. There are particular skills that are necessary to evaluate art works. In this lesson they will learn these skills. Students are given the task to find an art work in the WV State Museum that they believe will excite others and will be displayed in their school library. Students are given criteria in which to evaluate these pieces and it is their goal to find an art work their classmates will enjoy. (4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th grades - Discovery Room 24)

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5. "Quilt Squared" for 4th through 6th grades.

Crafts have always been a part of rural culture. Crafts differ from "art" in that they serve a purpose, as well as being beautiful. Quilts also have significance because they were often made from old clothing and the owner could use it as a "remembrance." Using what students learned and explored in the WV State Museum students will use math to design their own class quilt. (4th, 5th, 6th grades - Discovery Rooms 25)

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6. "WV Wants You!" for 4th through 8th grades.

Music is an essential part of our culture and students of all ages listen and enjoy a variety of music styles. West Virginia has a strong tradition of encouraging and fostering many musical styles. Students are told that Def PB Records is looking for a new artist that will capture the essence of West Virginia in music. Their team will write, adapt and compose a song that captures what they experienced while visiting the West Virginia Museum of Culture and History. Students will present their finished song, symphony, cantata or whatever they created at a class assembly. (4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th grades - Discovery Room 26)

Opens in a new window and Includes: Lesson and Rubrics