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Relevance in Stone

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Summary

Starting with the Mount Rushmore National Memorial quarter, students will analyze how the accomplishments of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and Roosevelt led to their inclusion on Mount Rushmore and relate to contemporary issues.

Coin Type(s)

  • Quarter

Coin Program(s)

  • America The Beautiful Quarters

Objectives

Students will analyze how the accomplishments of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and Roosevelt led to their inclusion on Mount Rushmore and relate to contemporary issues.

Major Subject Area Connections

  • Language Arts
  • 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

Materials

Preparations

  • Make copies of relevant worksheets.
  • Bookmark relevant Web sites.

Worksheets and Files

Lesson plan, worksheet(s), and rubric (if any) at www.usmint.gov/kids/teachers/lessonPlans/pdf/396.pdf.

  1. Display and examine the "Mount Rushmore National Memorial Quarter" page. Locate this site on a class map. Note its position in relation to your school’s location. Explain to the students that the United States Mint began to issue the quarters in the America the Beautiful Quarters® Program in 2010. When the program ends in 2021, there will be 56 designs. Each design will focus on a different national site—one from each state, territory and the District of Columbia.
  2. Have a class or small group discussion about the design and discuss Mount Rushmore National Memorial in general. Have the students name the four presidents represented; Washington, Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Lincoln.
  3. Have the students research one accomplishment of each president and explain how those accomplishments may have led to their inclusion on Mount Rushmore.
  4. Have the students partner as randomly as possible so they can work with classmates who are not their usual choice. For example, have them form two concentric circles and walk in opposite directions until they get a signal to stop. Have the pairs share their accomplishment for Washington and fill in the classmate’s Washington box on their "Accomplishments" worksheet. Repeat the random selection and sharing process for each of the four presidents. As a class, discuss the accomplishments discovered and which ones actually apply (see the worksheet answer key).
  5. Have the students pick a contemporary issue for a letter to the editor of a fictional newspaper. Allow time for them to research these four presidents’ stated views (quotes) and acts that support the student’s opinion. Review the "Letter to the Editor Rubric" with them. Then have them write to the editor giving their opinion and drawing on one or more of these presidents’ relevant quotes or actions to support their position.
There are no modification options for this lesson plan.
  • Use the rubric to evaluate the student’s letter to assess whether they have met the lesson objective.
  • Evaluate the "Accomplishments Worksheet" for completeness and accuracy.

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: RL.9-10 Reading: Informational Text
Grade(s): Grades 9– 10
Cluster: Integration of Knowledge and Ideas
Standards:

  • RI.9-10.7. Analyze various accounts of a subject told in different mediums (e.g., a person’s life story in both print and multimedia), determining which details are emphasized in each account.
  • RI.9-10.8. Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, assessing whether the reasoning is valid and the evidence is relevant and sufficient; identify false statements and fallacious reasoning.
  • RI.9-10.9. Analyze seminal U.S. documents of historical and literary significance (e.g., Washington’s Farewell Address, the Gettysburg Address, Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech, King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail”), including how they address related themes and concepts.

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: RL.9-10 Reading: Informational Text
Grade(s): Grades 9– 10
Cluster: Key Ideas and Details
Standards:

  • RI.9-10.1. Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
  • RI.9-10.2. Determine a central idea of a text and analyze its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.
  • RI.9-10.3. Analyze how the author unfolds an analysis or series of ideas or events, including the order in which the points are made, how they are introduced and developed, and the connections that are drawn between them.

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: RL.9-10 Reading: Informational Text
Grade(s): Grades 9– 10
Cluster: Craft and Structure
Standards:

  • RI.9-10.4. Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings; analyze the cumulative impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone (e.g., how the language of a court opinion differs from that of a newspaper).
  • RI.9-10.5. Analyze in detail how an author’s ideas or claims are developed and refined by particular sentences, paragraphs, or larger portions of a text (e.g., a section or chapter).
  • RI.9-10.6. Determine an author’s point of view or purpose in a text and analyze how an author uses rhetoric to advance that point of view or purpose.

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: L.9-10 Language
Grade(s): Grades 9– 10
Cluster: Conventions of Standard English
Standards:

  • L.9-10.1. Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
    • Use parallel structure.
    • Use various types of phrases (noun, verb, adjectival, adverbial, participial, prepositional, absolute) and clauses (independent, dependent; noun, relative, adverbial) to convey specific meanings and add variety and interest to writing or presentations.
  • L.9-10.2. Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.
    • Use a semicolon (and perhaps a conjunctive adverb) to link two or more closely related independent clauses.
    • Use a colon to introduce a list or quotation.
    • Spell correctly.

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: SL.9-10 Speaking and Listening
Grade(s): Grades 9– 10
Cluster: Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas
Standards:

  • SL.9-10.4. Present information, findings, and supporting evidence clearly, concisely, and logically such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, substance, and style are appropriate to purpose, audience, and task.
  • SL.9-10.5. Make strategic use of digital media (e.g., textual, graphical, audio, visual, and interactive elements) in presentations to enhance understanding of findings, reasoning, and evidence and to add interest.
  • SL.9-10.6. Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate. (See grades 9–10 Language standards 1 and 3 for specific expectations.)

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: W.9-10 Writing
Grade(s): Grades 9– 10
Cluster: Production and Distribution of Writing
Standards:

  • W.9-10.4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 1–3 above.)
  • W.9-10.5. Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on addressing what is most significant for a specific purpose and audience. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1–3 up to and including grades 9–10.)
  • W.9-10.6. Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products, taking advantage of technology’s capacity to link to other information and to display information flexibly and dynamically.

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: W.9-10 Writing
Grade(s): Grades 9– 10
Cluster: Research to Build and Present Knowledge
Standards:

  • W.9-10.7. Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
  • W.9-10.8. Gather relevant information from multiple authoritative print and digital sources, using advanced searches effectively; assess the usefulness of each source in answering the research question; integrate information into the text selectively to maintain the flow of ideas, avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation.
  • W.9-10.9. Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
    • Apply grades 9–10 Reading standards to literature (e.g., “Analyze how an author draws on and transforms source material in a specific work [e.g., how Shakespeare treats a theme or topic from Ovid or the Bible or how a later author draws on a play by Shakespeare]”).
    • Apply grades 9–10 Reading standards to literary nonfiction (e.g., “Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, assessing whether the reasoning is valid and the evidence is relevant and sufficient; identify false statements and fallacious reasoning”).

This lesson plan is not associated with any National Standards.