Grades K-1: Proud to Be Americans: Patriotic Acts and Symbols

Grades K-1: Proud to Be Americans: Patriotic Acts and Symbols. The goal of this unit is to teach kindergarten and first grade students to read closely and critically in order to comprehend complex informational text. In this unit, the teacher uses a variety of strategies, including a multi-sensory approach, to actively engage students in analyzing vocabulary, answering text-dependent questions, and creating graphic organizers. Students learn to take collaborative notes using a graphic organizer and to use those notes to develop a deeper understanding of the text hrough writing. Discussion and writing exercises help students to construct meaning of the text in a way that “sticks.”

Standards & Objectives

Academic standards
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.1.4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 1 reading and content, choosing flexibly from an...
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.K.4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on kindergarten reading and content.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.1
Ask and answer questions about key details in a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.10
With prompting and support, read informational texts appropriately complex for grade 1.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.2
Identify the main topic and retell key details of a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.3
Describe the connection between two individuals, events, ideas, or pieces of information in a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.4
Ask and answer questions to help determine or clarify the meaning of words and phrases in a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.K.1
With prompting and support, ask and answer questions about key details in a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.K.10
Actively engage in group reading activities with purpose and understanding.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.K.2
With prompting and support, identify the main topic and retell key details of a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.K.3
With prompting and support, describe the connection between two individuals, events, ideas, or pieces of information in a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.K.4
With prompting and support, ask and answer questions about unknown words in a text.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.1.2
Ask and answer questions about key details in a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.1.6
Produce complete sentences when appropriate to task and situation. (See grade 1 Language standards 1 and 3 for specific expectations.)
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.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...
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.1.1
Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or name the book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply a reason for the opinion, and...
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.K.2
Use a combination of drawing, dictating, and writing to compose informative/explanatory texts in which they name what they are writing about and...
 
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Learning objectives: 

The goal of this unit is to teach kindergarten and first grade students to read closely and critically in order to comprehend complex informational text. In this unit, the teacher uses a variety of strategies, including a multi-sensory approach, to actively engage students in analyzing vocabulary, answering text-dependent questions, and creating graphic organizers. Students learn to take collaborative notes using a graphic organizer and to use those notes to develop a deeper understanding of the text through writing. Discussion and writing exercises help students to construct meaning of the text in a way that “sticks.”

Unit Variations

Blooms taxonomy level: 
Applying
Extension suggestions: 

Extensions:

  • Day 1 Extension Idea: Teachers may wish to create an essential question for the unit. An example essential question might be, “Why do we have symbols to help us show our patriotism?” or “How can symbols and acts of patriotism help us show our love for our country?”
  • Day 2 Extension Idea: Teachers may wish to create a class chart with essential vocabulary. This chart could include words that capture the essence of the meaning of each text. Or this chart could contain vocabulary words that are new to students. Students can be encouraged to use the words from the chart in their speaking and writing. Discuss the difference between the words “capital” and “capitol.” Another word that may be worth investigating is “bell.” Students could look at the multiple meanings of this word and investigate the different sizes of bells in relation to the Liberty Bell. 
  • Day 5 Extension Idea: In addition to symbols, this text introduces the idea of patriotic acts and monuments. Teachers can link these words with the word “symbols” from the first text. Teacher can create a map of these words by illustrating how they are similar and different. 

Possible Extension Ideas:

  • The writing can typed by the teacher or by the students. Students can add illustrations or pictures.
  • Students can read their writing to peers. Peers can provide feedback on the writing.
  • Teachers can conference with students to provide feedback on the writing.

Additional Text Extension Idea:

  • Use the third text, “I Pledge Allegiance.” Read the text aloud to students and discuss the main idea. Kindergarten students can discuss how the pledge is a symbol of America; first grade students can discuss different ways in which the pledge shows patriotism. 

Possible Social Studies Extension Ideas:

  • Students can create a log of other symbols of America. These logs can be used to locate and record symbols, landmarks, and events. This activity addresses Tennessee Social Studies (2014-2015) standard K.16.
  • Teachers can create a collection of photos of national symbols. This activity address Tennessee Social Studies (2014-2015) standard K.16.
  • Tennessee Social Studies (2014-2015) standards K.29 and 1.39 require students to learn about several national holidays. After students have learned about several national holidays, students can discuss how national holidays support both national symbols and acts of patriotism. Several holidays are mentioned in the texts.
  • Tennessee Social Studies (2014-2015) standard K.16 requires students to learn the words to the Pledge of Allegiance. Teachers can use the optional third text to help students learn the words and the meaning behind the words to the pledge.
  • First grade or more advanced students may enjoy writing an additional task to a more challenging prompt. Example: “Why should all Americans protect and preserve our national landmarks and symbols?” Use what you have learned about symbols and acts of patriotism as an example.

References

Citations: 

(MLA 7th Edition) Kids Infobits presents The United States Our Country Has Many Symbols Weekly Reader, Edition Pre-K (including Science Spin), May-June 2012 v32 pS1(5)Thomson Gale, 2007. Reproduced in Kids InfoBits. Detroit: Gale, 2014. http://galenet.galegroup.com/servlet/KidsInfoBits?s1=The+United+States+O...