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Form Meets Function

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Summary

Starting with the Great Basin National Park quarter, students will understand and explain some of the distinct ecosystems and natural features of Great Basin National Park.

Coin Type(s)

  • Quarter

Coin Program(s)

  • America The Beautiful Quarters

Objectives

Students will understand and explain some of the distinct ecosystems and natural features of Great Basin National Park.

Major Subject Area Connections

  • Art
  • Social Studies

Grades

  • Ninth grade
  • Tenth grade
  • Eleventh grade
  • Twelfth grade

Class Time

Sessions: Two
Session Length: 45-60 minutes
Total Length: 91-120 minutes

Groupings

  • Whole group
  • Small groups
  • Individual work
  1. Display and examine the "Great Basin National Park Quarter" page or use the zoom feature on the coin’s page at www.usmint.gov/mint_programs/atb/?local=GreatBasin. Locate Great Basin National Park on a class map. Note its position in relation to your school’s location. As background, explain to the students that the United States Mint began to issue the quarters in the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program in 2010. By the time the program ends in 2021, there will be a total of 56 designs. Each design will focus on a different national site— one from each state, territory and the District of Columbia.
  2. Distribute the "What Are Ecosystems?" worksheet. As a class, discuss the term "ecosystem." Record student responses and a definition on chart paper. Have the students record the definition on their worksheets.
  3. Divide the class into seven groups. Have the students brainstorm what they can tell about the features in the quarter design and answer the questions on the bottom of the worksheet. Then discuss the Bristlecone Pine, record student responses on chart paper and?? if necessary, provide the correct answers for the worksheet.
  4. Assign each group one natural feature from the "What Are Ecosystems?" worksheet. Using available classroom and online resources, have each group research the assigned feature, fill in the definition and create an artwork that illustrates the feature.
  5. Have each group present their definition and artwork to the class. Have all the students note all the correct definitions on the "What Are Ecosystems?" worksheet so they have information on all seven features.
  6. Have the students create a map incorporating all of these ecosystems and natural features. Invite them to invent a location or use an existing one. Review the directions on the "Ecosystems Map Rubric" with the class.
There are no modification options for this lesson plan.

Use the students’ maps and the rubric to assess whether they have met the lesson objective.

This lesson plan is not associated with any Common Core Standards.

Discipline: Visual Arts and Music
Domain: 9-12 Visual Arts
Cluster: Standard 3: Choosing and evaluating a range of subject matter, symbols, and ideas
Grade(s): Grades 9–12
Standards:

Proficient:

  • Students reflect on how artworks differ visually, spatially, temporally, and functionally, and describe how these are related to history and culture
  • Students apply subjects, symbols, and ideas in their artworks and use the skills gained to solve problems in daily life

Advanced:

  • Students describe the origins of specific images and ideas and explain why they are of value in their artwork and in the work of others
  • Students evaluate and defend the validity of sources for content and the manner in which subject matter, symbols, and images are used in the students' works and in significant works by others

Discipline: Visual Arts and Music
Domain: 9-12 Visual Arts
Cluster: Standard 5: Reflecting upon and assessing the characteristics and merits of their work and the work of others
Grade(s): Grades 9–12
Standards:

Proficient:

  • Students identify intentions of those creating artworks, explore the implications of various purposes, and justify their analyses of purposes in particular works
  • Students describe meanings of artworks by analyzing how specific works are created and how they relate to historical and cultural contexts
  • Students reflect analytically on various interpretations as a means for understanding and evaluating works of visual art

Advanced:

  • Students correlate responses to works of visual art with various techniques for communicating meanings, ideas, attitudes, views, and intentions

Discipline: Social Studies
Domain: All Thematic Standards
Cluster: People, Places, and Environment
Grade(s): Grades 9–12
Standards:

Teachers should:

  • Enable learners to use, interpret, and distinguish various representations of Earth such as maps, globes, and photographs, and to use appropriate geographic tools
  • Encourage learners to construct, use, and refine maps and mental maps, calculate distance, scale, area, and density, and organize information about people, places, regions, and environments in a spatial context
  • Help learners to locate, distinguish, and describe the relationships among varying regional and global patterns of physical systems such as landforms, climate, and natural resources, and explain changes in the physical systems
  • Guide learners in exploring characteristics, distribution, and migration of human populations on Earth’s surface
  • Have learners describe how people create places that reflect culture, human needs, current values and ideals, and government policies
  • Provide opportunities for learners to examine, interpret, and analyze interactions of human beings and their physical environments, and to observe and analyze social and economic effects of environmental changes, both positive and negative
  • Challenge learners to consider, compare, and evaluate existing uses of resources and land in communities, regions, countries, and the world
  • Direct learners to explore ways in which Earth’s physical features have changed over time, and describe and assess ways historical events have influenced and been influenced by physical and human geographic features

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