Through the Tunnel We Go!

Summary

Students will describe the relative positions of objects using prepositions. Students will formulate potential writing ideas.

Coin Type(s)

  • Quarter

Coin Program(s)

  • America the Beautiful Quarters

Objectives

Students will describe the relative positions of objects using prepositions. Students will formulate potential writing ideas.

Major Subject Area Connections

  • Math
  • Language Arts

Grades

  • K
  • 1st

Class Time

  • Sessions: Four
  • Session Length: 20-30 minutes
  • Total Length: 91-120 minutes

Groupings

  • Whole group
  • Pairs
  • Individual work

Background Knowledge

  • Following directions and step-by-step instructions
  • Counting backwards
  • Generating writing ideas
  • The five senses

Terms and Concepts

  • Quarter
  • Obverse (front)
  • Reverse (back)
  • Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Parkway
  • Preposition
  • Above
  • Below
  • Between
  • In
  • Next to
  • Over
  • Under
  • Through
  • Tunnel

Materials

  • 1 overhead projector or equivalent technology
  • 1 overhead transparency (or photocopy) of each of the following:
    • "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page
    • "Above and Below" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Samples" worksheets
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Pictures" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Checklist"
    • "Through the Tunnel" worksheet
    • "Through the Tunnel Checklist"
  • Copies of the following:
    • "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Pictures" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Checklist"
    • "Through the Tunnel" worksheet
    • "Through the Tunnel Checklist"
  • 1 copy of an age-appropriate text that gives information about prepositions, such as:
    • Rosie's Walk by Pat Hutchins
    • Over-Under by Catherine Matthias
    • Pig Pig Meets the Lion by David McPhail
    • Around the House, the Fox Chased the Mouse: A Prepositional Tale by Rick Walton
  • 1 copy of an age-appropriate text that gives information about a road trip, such as:
    • Road Trip by Roger Eschbacher
    • Little Critter's The Trip by Mercer Mayer
    • Pictures from Our Vacation by Lynne Rae Perkins
    • Henry and Mudge and the Tumbling Trip by Cynthia Rylant
  • Chart paper
  • Markers
  • Pencils
  • Crayons
  • Images of Blue Ridge Parkway tunnels
  • Plastic toy hoop (30 inches)
  • Reward stickers
  • Sticky notes (4 by 6 inches)
  • Scissors
  • Glue

Preparations

  • Make an overhead transparency (or photocopy) of each of the following:
    • "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page
    • "Above and Below" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Samples" worksheets
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Pictures" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheet
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Checklist"
    • "Through the Tunnel" worksheet
    • "Through the Tunnel Checklist"
  • Make copies of each of the following:
    • "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page (1 per pair)
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet (2 per pair)
    • "Blue Ridge Pictures" worksheet (1/2 sheet per student)
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheet (1 per pair)
    • "Blue Ridge Treasure Checklist" (1 per student)
    • "Through the Tunnel" worksheet (1 per student)
    • "Through the Tunnel Checklist" (1 per student)
  • Locate a text that gives information about prepositions (see examples under "Materials").
  • Locate a text that gives information about a road trip (see examples under "Materials").
  • Gather images of Blue Ridge Parkway tunnels.
  • Cut out prepositional cards on the "Above and Below" worksheet for Session 1.
  • Create additional samples of the "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheet for Session 2.
  • Create a chart labeled "Imagine This!" for Session 3.
  • Gather a variety of objects for a road trip (map, brochures, journal, activity book, camera, etc.).

Worksheets

Worksheets and files (PDF)

Lesson Steps

Session 1

  1. Display and examine the "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page. As background information, 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. Tell the students that the front of a coin is called the "obverse" and the back is called the "reverse."  Ask the students to tell you what they see in the image on the quarter's reverse. Explain that the image depicts the Blue Ridge Parkway, which connects the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina to the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia. Tell the students that a parkway is a road designed for passenger car traffic and made for easy and safe travel. It is an "elongated park" filled with nature and scenic views. Add the definition to chart paper. Locate the parkway on a class map. Note its position in relation to your school's location.
  3. Discuss with the students the imagery on the coin and identify the road, flowers, hill, and tunnel. Display images of Blue Ridge Parkway tunnels and tell the students that a tunnel is a special type of passage built through a hill or under a road. Add the definition to the chart paper.
  4. Discuss and define the term "prepositions" (such as above, below, between, behind, or next to) as words that describe where something is located. Create a word list and sketch corresponding images on chart paper.
  5. Introduce the students to the selected text about prepositions. As a group, preview the text and illustrations to generate observations about what is occurring at different points in the text. Read the selected text to the class and attend to any unfamiliar vocabulary.
  6. Introduce the "Above and Below" cards. As you introduce each preposition card, have a student model each preposition using the plastic toy hoop.
  7. Divide the class into pairs. Display the "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page again. Have the pairs talk about ways to describe the location of the objects on the coin to someone who couldn't see it.
  8. Explain to the students that they will be using prepositional words to create a treasure map in the next session.

Session 2

  1. Display the "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page. Tell the students they are going to hide an imaginary treasure in the Blue Ridge Parkway quarter image. They will work with a partner to create a step-by-step map so other students can use it to find the treasure.
  2. Display the "Blue Ridge Treasure Samples" worksheets. Model for the students how to read the clues and demonstrate how to mark the steps on the "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page to find the treasure.
  3. Display an unmarked copy of the "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet. Discuss with the students how to create a map on the "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheet. Explain that they will need to create the map in reverse order, starting with the treasure's location.
  4. Model for the students how to draw the steps on the "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheet and then complete the "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet. For example, have the students first put an "X" to mark the spot where the treasure will be, then creating clues three, two, and one. Have the students use a different color marker for each step. Finally, have the students put an "S" at the starting point.
  5. Divide the class into pairs. Distribute a copy of the "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet and the "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheet to each pair. Allow time for the students to complete the project.
  6. Have the students check that their names are on both worksheets, then collect the completed "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" and "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheets.
  7. Put the completed "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheets to the side to be used as an answer key later in the lesson. Tell the students that they will now use another pair's "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet to see if they can find the hidden treasure.
  8. Distribute a completed "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet to each pair of students, making sure they are not given their own maps. Distribute a "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" worksheet to each pair. Have each pair of students read the clues and mark the "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page.
  9. When the students are finished, match each clue's worksheet with its "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" as an answer key. Give each pair a reward sticker for finding the treasure.
  10. Distribute the "Blue Ridge Treasure Checklist." Have the students complete the checklist.
  11. Collect the worksheets. Display the completed "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheets and "Blue Ridge Treasure Map" worksheets in the classroom or hallway.

Sessions 3 and 4

  1. Review the information and charts from the previous sessions. Display the "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page, focusing attention on the road and tunnel.
  2. Ask the students if they have ever been on a road trip before. Ask the students to think about the things they might bring on a road trip. Have the students discuss with a partner something they might need. Display the variety of road trip objects you collected, such as a map, brochures, and a camera.
  3. Distribute the sticky notes and have the students draw and label something they might bring on a road trip. Have the students share what they drew. Sort the drawings into categories (such as food, toys, equipment) and display the groups on the board.
  4. Introduce the students to the selected text about a road trip. As a group, preview the text and illustrations to generate observations about what is occurring at different points in the text. Read the selected text or portions of the text to the class and attend to any unfamiliar vocabulary.
  5. Display the "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" page, and ask the students to imagine where the tunnel leads. Ask the students to imagine taking a road trip through the tunnel. Ask the students to think about what they might be riding in, who is with them, and what they might see, hear, smell, and touch as they ride through the tunnel.
  6. Have the students discuss with a partner what they imagined. Encourage the students to ask questions of their partners to help provide details. Have the partners share their ideas with the class and add general ideas to the "Imagine This!" chart.
  7. Tell the students they will be creating a story idea that they will be able to use to write a story. Display the "Through the Tunnel" worksheet and read the directions as a class. Display the "Through the Tunnel Checklist" and review it with the students.
  8. Distribute the worksheet and checklist and allow time for the students to complete the story idea. Have the students complete the checklist when finished.
  9. Allow the students to share their story ideas with the class.
  10. Collect the worksheets and checklists.

Differentiated Learning Options

  • Have students review the definition and sketches of prepositions and "act out" various prepositional words with a prop as an introduction for each session.
  • Have students use pre-cut pictures.
  • Have students use pre-drawn Blue Ridge Parkway treasure maps and a scribe to complete the "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet.
  • Have students dictate the written portion of the worksheet.
  • Have students write the steps on sentence strips and put them in order.

Enrichments/Extensions

  • Have students examine the images on the Shenandoah National Park, Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Blue Ridge Parkway quarters. Have students compare the geographic relationships and discuss the symbolism on the coins.
  • Have students work with an older student to help them complete the "Blue Ridge Treasure" worksheet, the "Blue Ridge Treasure Map," and the "Blue Ridge Parkway Quarter" worksheet.
  • Have students create a class poster of prepositional words to display in the classroom.
  • Have students learn more about preparing for an outing with the 2013 White Mountain National Forest lesson plan for grades 2 and 3, "Let's Take A Hike!"
  • Have students keep their "Through the Tunnel" worksheet in their writing journal to use as a story starter.
  • Have students write a story based on the "Through the Tunnel" worksheet.
  • Have students learn more about prepositional words with the 2005 West Virginia 50 State Quarters lesson plan for grades K and 1, "Over, Under, In, and Out."
  • Have students use prepositional language to identify the locations of objects on other quarters.

Assess

Use the students' class participation, worksheets, and checklists to evaluate whether they have met the lesson objectives.

Common Core Standards

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: SL.K Speaking and Listening
Grade(s): Grade K
Cluster: Comprehension and Collaboration
Standards:

  • SL.K.1. Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about kindergarten topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.
    • Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions (e.g., listening to others and taking turns speaking about the topics and texts under discussion).
    • Continue a conversation through multiple exchanges.
  • SL.K.2. Confirm understanding of a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media by asking and answering questions about key details and requesting clarification if something is not understood.
  • SL.K.3. Ask and answer questions in order to seek help, get information, or clarify something that is not understood.
  • SL.K.4. Describe familiar people, places, things, and events and, with prompting and support, provide additional detail.
  • SL.K.5. Add drawings or other visual displays to descriptions as desired to provide additional detail.
  • SL.K.6. Speak audibly and express thoughts, feelings, and ideas clearly.

Discipline: Math
Domain: K.G Geometry
Grade(s): Grade K
Cluster: Identify and describe shapes (squares, circles, triangles, rectangles, hexagons, cubes, cones, cylinders and spheres)
Standards:

  • K.G.1. Describe objects in the environment using names of shapes, and describe the relative positions of these objects using terms such as above, below, beside, in front of, behind and next to.
  • K.G.2. Correctly name shapes regardless of their orientations or overall size.
  • K.G.3. Identify shapes as two-dimensional (lying in a plane, "flat") or three-dimensional ("solid"). 

National Standards

Discipline: Mathematics
Domain: K-2 Geometry
Cluster: Specify locations and describe spatial relationships using coordinate geometry and other representational systems.
Grade(s): Grades K–2
Standards:

In K through grade 2 all students should

  • describe, name, and interpret relative positions in space and apply ideas about relative position;
  • describe, name, and interpret direction and distance in navigating space and apply ideas about direction and distance; and
  • find and name locations with simple relationships such as "near to" and in coordinate systems such as maps.