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Lessons for

Grades 5-8
Grades 9-12

Past lessons
for Grades K-4

Oct. 05, 2015
Sep. 28, 2015
Sep. 21, 2015
Sep. 14, 2015
Sep. 07, 2015
Aug. 31, 2015
Aug. 24, 2015
Aug. 17, 2015
Aug. 10, 2015
Aug. 03, 2015
July 27, 2015
July 20, 2015
July 13, 2015
June 29, 2015
June 22, 2015
June 15, 2015
June 08, 2015
June 01, 2015
May 25, 2015
May 18, 2015
May 11, 2015
May 04, 2015
Apr 27, 2015
Apr 20, 2015
Apr 13, 2015
Apr 06, 2015
Mar. 30, 2015
Mar. 23, 2015
Mar. 16, 2015
Mar. 09, 2015
Mar. 02, 2015
Feb. 23, 2015
Feb. 16, 2015
Feb. 09, 2015
Feb. 02, 2015
Jan. 26, 2015
Jan. 19, 2015
Jan. 12, 2015
Jan. 05, 2015
Dec. 15, 2014

For Grades K-4 , week of Oct. 05, 2015

1. Longest-Serving Monarch

Queen Elizabeth II has become Britain’s longest-serving monarch, passing her great-great-grandmother, Queen Victoria. Elizabeth became queen of the European nation at 25, and as of September 9, at age 89, she had ruled for 23,226 days or 63 years, seven months and two days. Her oldest son, Charles, who is next in line to be Britain’s monarch, is now the oldest-ever Prince of Wales. If Queen Elizabeth II lives as long as her mother, Charles will be 79 when he becomes king. During Elizabeth’s reign, Britain has had 12 prime ministers (and the U.S. has had 11 presidents). Queen Elizabeth II is head of Britain’s royal family, but she does not lead the British government. Like the U.S. president, the prime minister is head of the government. As a class, use the newspaper or Internet to find and read a story about Queen Elizabeth II or life in Britain. Use what you read to draw a series of comic strips showing what it would be like to be queen or to live in Britain.

Common Core State Standards: Reading closely what a text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; using drawings or visual displays when appropriate to enhance the development of main ideas or points; conducting short research projects that build knowledge about a topic.

2. Sheep’s Weight Cut in Half

A lost sheep was found in a scrub-land area of Australia this summer, and its wool was terribly overgrown. It had to be cut — perhaps for the first time — and the shearing yielded 89 pounds of wool. That’s equal to about 30 wool sweaters — and amounted to almost half the animal’s body weight. The merino sheep was so weighted down with wool it could barely get up and walk. It was found by bushwalkers and taken to an animal rescue group to be sheared. The sheep was drugged during the shearing due to fears that removing the wool could tear the animal’s skin. The amount of wool was probably a world record — the Guinness World Records website notes that the most wool cut in a single shearing was 63 pounds, 11 ounces. Animals are often in the news for amazing feats or facts. Find and read about an animal in the news. Write the name of the animal down the side of a sheet of paper. Then use each letter of the animal’s name to start a complete sentence describing why the animal is in the news.

Common Core State Standards: Producing clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization and style are appropriate to the task; citing specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions.

3. Native American Center

To honor Native Americans, a new Seneca Art and Culture Center will open in New York State on the site of a Seneca tribal settlement that had been destroyed in 1687. Exhibitions of artistic and historic artifacts will tell the story of Native American peoples in that area, and also will feature work of Native American artists today. The 17,300-square-foot center in Victor, New York, has been built into a hillside next to a re-creation of a Seneca longhouse. Gardens will feature traditional Seneca and Iroquois plants. The new Seneca Art and Culture Center will celebrate the history of the Native American Seneca people in New York State. Other communities also honor Native Americans or other groups that were part of local history. As a class, use the newspaper or Internet to find and read a story about an effort to honor Native Americans or another group in your state. Use what you read and images from the newspaper to design a travel ad for the newspaper, calling attention to this effort. Make sure your ad has an eye-catching headline!

Common Core State Standards: Integrating information presented in different media or formats to develop a coherent understanding of a topic; conducting short research projects that build knowledge about a topic.

4. Dark Side of the Moon

The Asian nation of China plans to become the first country to explore the dark side of the moon. China will launch a lunar probe that would study conditions on the invisible part of Earth’s only natural satellite. China already has soft-landed a spacecraft on the moon’s surface, and plans to use low-frequency radio probes to examine the moon’s back side. Because the moon does not rotate as it orbits the Earth, its back side is never visible from telescopes on Earth. If the new project succeeds, a Chinese scientist said, “we can fill a void.” Scientists study the moon and other planets to learn about the history of our solar system. Use the newspaper and the website to read about another mission seeking to learn more about the solar system. Use what you read to write a summary of what the mission seeks to learn.

Common Core State Standards: Writing informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly; citing specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions.

5. Dog Found after 42 Days

Forty-two days after running away from a car crash and into the woods, a dog named Jade turned up at Yellowstone National Park. The female Australian shepherd was “skin and bones, but otherwise … perfectly fine,” according to the owner. “I thought she was gone,” he said. Signs had been posted throughout the area, and park visitors were urged on the Internet to keep an eye out for Jade. She had a scratch on her mouth but apparently had avoided attacks by the park’s wildlife, including wolves and bears. Animals sometimes do incredible things to survive. In the newspaper or online, read a story about Yellowstone National Park and the wildlife that live there. Then write a short creative story as if you were the dog Jade, trying to survive on your own in the park. Share stories as a class, and add drawings if you wish.

Common Core State Standards: Writing narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events; conducting short research projects that build knowledge about a topic; engaging effectively in a range of collaborative discussions.