Touching Sky: Through Tradition and Words

Summary

Students will describe the role of Mohawk Ironworkers. Students will create poems to demonstrate perspective of the Mohawk Ironworkers.

Coin Type(s)

  • Dollar

Coin Program(s)

  • Native American $1 Coins

Objectives

Students will describe the role of Mohawk Ironworkers. Students will create poems to demonstrate perspective of the Mohawk Ironworkers.

Major Subject Area Connections

  • Language Arts

Minor/supporting Subject Area Connections

  • Science

Grades

  • 4th
  • 5th
  • 6th

Class Time

  • Sessions: Three
  • Session Length: 45-60 minutes
  • Total Length: 151-500 minutes

Groupings

  • Whole group
  • Individual work

Background Knowledge

Students should have a basic knowledge of:

  • New York
  • Poetry

Terms and Concepts

  • Quarter
  • Reverse (back)
  • Obverse (front)
  • Mohawk
  • Ironworker
  • Skyscraper
  • Stanza

Materials

  • 1 overhead projector or other classroom technology (optional)
  • 1 overhead transparency (or equivalent) of the "2015 Native American $1 Coin" page
  • 1 class map of the United States
  • Copies of the following:
    • "2015 Native American $1 Coin" page
    • "Sky Imagery" worksheet
    • "I Am Poetry" worksheet"
    • Poetry Frames" worksheet
    • "Poetry Rubric" worksheet
  • 1 copy of an age-appropriate text that gives information about building skyscrapers and the Mohawk culture
  • Chart paper
  • Find age-appropriate websites that give information about Mohawk Ironworkers and building skyscrapers
  • Chart paper
  • Colored copy paper
  • Markers/crayons/colored pencils

Preparations

  • Make an overhead transparency (or equivalent) of the "2015 Native American $1 Coin" page.
  • Locate information, images, or digital clips about the Mohawk Ironworkers.
  • Make copies of the following:
    • "2015 Native American $1 Coin" page (1 per student).
    • "Sky Imagery" worksheet (1 per student).
    • "I Am Poetry" worksheet" (1 per student).
    • "Poetry Frames" worksheet (1 per student).
    • "Poetry Rubric" worksheet (1 per student).
  • Arrange to use the school computer lab or class set of portable technology.
  • Bookmark websites that give information about Mohawk Ironworkers.

Worksheets

Worksheets and files (PDF)

Lesson Steps

Session 1

  1. Describe the Native American $1 Coin Program for background information. The program is described at http://www.usmint.gov/kids/coinNews/nativeAmerican/.
  2. Display "2015 Native American $1 Coin Reverse" overhead transparency or photocopy. Examine the coin design with the students and identify the 2015 theme of "Mohawk Ironworkers."
  3. Tell the students that the front of a coin is called the "obverse" and the back is called the "reverse." Discuss the following vocabulary as students share their ideas about the image on the quarter's reverse. Record student responses on chart paper.
    1. Mohawk - Mohawk - an American Indian Nation, one of six known collectively as the Iroquois or Haudenosaunee. Also refers to individuals who are members of the Mohawk Nation. Tuscarora joined in 1722.
    2. Ironworker - a tradesman (man or woman) who works in the ironworking industry.
    3. Skyscraper - a very tall building of many stories.
  4. Introduce the students to the "Freeze Frame" concept where students visualize what a selected piece of text is saying and bring it to life posing as characters from the text re-creating a still-life scene. Read the selected text about Mohawk Ironworkers and attend to any unfamiliar vocabulary. Have each group perform their "freeze frame". Guide the other students to describe which section of text the students are demonstrating through their visual choices. While each group is in their "freeze frame" pose, encourage students to use descriptive language to describe what each character would see, hear, feel, or touch.
  5. Introduce the students to the selected digital images or clips about Mohawk Ironworkers. As a group, generate observations about what is occurring at different points in the photograph or clip. Compare these digital images or clips with the text that was read, and with the student designed "freeze frames".

Session 2

  1. Display "2015 Native American $1 Coin Reverse" overhead transparency or photocopy again. Review the activities of the previous session.
  2. Distribute the "Sky Imagery Worksheet" to students and explain the directions. Use these guiding questions to help them complete the worksheet. Ask students to describe the man's point of view on the reverse of the coin. Guide the students to think about what the man might hear in the cityscape below, the construction around him, or from the sky. Guide students to think about what the man might feel as he touches the steel beam. Ask them to think about the temperature outside. Guide students to think about what the man might be thinking as he works on the beam.
  3. After students have brainstormed a list of descriptive words or phrases on the "Sky Imagery Worksheet", display the "I Am" poetry worksheet through the classroom projector or on chart paper. Explain to the students that they will be creating a poem about the Mohawk Ironworker following this specific style. Tell the student that a stanza is a group of lines forming the basic recurring metrical unit in a poem; a verse. Working as whole group, guide student to complete the first stanza of the poem to model how to use the poetry frames.
  4. Distribute the "I Am" poetry worksheet and allow time for students to complete the worksheet.
  5. After students have completed their "I Am" poems, allow them to share with a partner. Encourage partners to help revise and edit the poems.
  6. Allow students to type their poems. Encourage students to create a sketch that illustrates their poems.

Sessions 3

  1. Display "2015 Native American $1 Coin Reverse" overhead transparency or photocopy again. Re-examine the coin design with the students, and ask the students to review their ideas about the image on the quarter's reverse from the chart created in the previous sessions. Ask students if they have new ideas about the image and add them to chart made in the previous sessions.
  2. Distribute the "Poetry Frames" worksheet to students. Review the different types of poems that can be created using these frames. Model each type of poem using a topic familiar to the class such as a shared field trip or class experience.
  3. Choose one of the frames to model focusing on information learned about the Mohawk Ironworkers.
  4. Organize student into partners or groups and assign each group one of the remaining poetry frames from the worksheet.
  5. Using the Mohawk Ironworkers image from the coin as inspiration, ask students to complete the assigned poetry frame.
  6. After students have completed their poems, allow them to share with other groups. Encourage groups to help revise and edit the poems.
  7. Allow students to type their poems. Encourage students to create a sketch that illustrates their poems.
  8. Display all students' poems from both sessions and invite other classes to a "gallery walk" to provide students an audience for their writing.

Differentiated Learning Options

  • Allow students to work with a partner.
  • Allow students extended time to complete work.
  • Allow students to type drafts on a computer.
  • Provide a word bank for students to use in creating their poems.
  • Allow students to dictate their poems.

Enrichments/Extensions

  • Have students write poems using all of the poetry frames and create a poetry anthology.
  • Have students learn more about Native Americans through other Native American $1 Coin lesson plans.

Assess

  • Take anecdotal notes about the students' participation in class discussions and group activity.
  • Evaluate the students' worksheets for understanding of the lesson objectives.
  • Use the "Poetry Rubric" to evaluate students' poems for content, form, and integration of learning about the Mohawk ironworkers.

Common Core Standards

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: W.6 Writing
Grade(s): Grade 6
Cluster: Production and Distribution of Writing
Standards:

  • W.6.4. 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.6.5. With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1–3 up to and including grade 6.)
  • W.6.6. Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing as well as to interact and collaborate with others; demonstrate sufficient command of keyboarding skills to type a minimum of three pages in a single sitting.

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: W.4 Writing
Grade(s): Grade 6
Cluster: Production and Distribution of Writing
Standards:

  • W.4.4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 1–3 above.)
  • W.4.5. With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, and editing. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1-3 up to and including grade 4.)
  • W.4.6. With some guidance and support from adults, use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing as well as to interact and collaborate with others; demonstrate sufficient command of keyboarding skills to type a minimum of one page in a single sitting.

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: W.5 Writing
Grade(s): Grade 6
Cluster: Production and Distribution of Writing
Standards:

  • W.5.4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 1–3.)
  • W.5.5. With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1-3 up to and including grade 5 here.)
  • W.5.6. With some guidance and support from adults, use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing as well as to interact and collaborate with others; demonstrate sufficient command of keyboarding skills to type a minimum of two pages in a single sitting.

National Standards

Discipline: Language Arts
Domain: All Language Arts Standards
Cluster: Effective Communication
Grade(s): Grades K–12
Standards:

  • Students adjust their use of spoken, written, and visual language (e.g., conventions, style, vocabulary) to communicate effectively with a variety of audiences and for different purposes.