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Impact II: Projects & Lesson Plans: Cruising through the City - A Beginner's Guide
Cruising through the City – A Beginner’s Guide

HOW IT WORKS
Cruising through the City – A Beginner’s Guide! is an interdisciplinary study that focuses on learning about the means of transportation available in New York City and the Red Hook Community in Brooklyn. The students tour the Panorama of the City of New York, a permanent exhibit at the Queens Museum of Art, and sketch drawings of the boroughs; the Atlantic Ocean; the Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Verrazano Narrows Bridges; landmark buildings; subway trains; and ferries. Throughout the study, the children read poems about transportation and are exposed to fiction and nonfiction literature through read-alouds and partner reading. The students use the Internet to research specific information about bridges (type, when construction started, when opened to the public, etc.) and the subway (why it was needed, when it was constructed, etc.). They compile facts about transportation in New York City and the Red Hook Community in a newsletter and word search. As a culminating project, the students construct a relief map of the five boroughs using clay and tempura paints. They design bridges using visual aides from the Internet, Popsicle sticks, and yarn, and subway trains are made from milk cartons, aluminum foil, and buttons. The students create 3-D sculptures of landmarks, buses, and ferries using papier-mâché. The relief map of New York City is added to the school’s museum, where the students act as curators for visiting classes that are provided with a transportation newsletter and word search to reinforce learning. 

THE STUDENTS
Second grade students of various learning abilities participate in this study for six weeks. This unit can easily be adapted to meet the needs of younger or older students. 

THE STAFF
Lisa Aldrich and Amy Gomes have been teaching second grade at P.S. 15 for three years. In November 2002, Lisa joined the Community School District 15 Teacher Leader Group. Lisa also presented a math workshop at the 79th Annual Meeting of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Conference in Orlando, Florida. Amy recently completed her Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education from Brooklyn College.

WHAT YOU NEED
This program requires a six-week duration with classes meeting four times a week (many lessons can be integrated into the reading writing and math workshops). The necessary resources include poems and books related to the theme of transportation; poetry notebooks; teacher-made activity sheets; AppleWorks and Student Writing Center software; a computer with Internet access; an overhead projector; an LCD projector (optional); papier-mâché, Popsicle sticks, black yarn, milk, cartons, tempura paints, clay, craft glue, buttons, fluorescent sticky notes, tri-fold presentation board, poster-board-size foam board, and paper.
 

OVERALL VALUE
Cruising through the City – A Beginner’s Guide! makes learning meaningful and enhances the students’ oral and written communication skills. The children work together as a team while taking pride in sharing their knowledge about transportation in New York City with the school community. 

 

View the Curriculum Unit/Dissemination Packet

CURRICULUM AREAS
Social Studies
Science
Math
Language Arts
Technology

GRADES
2

MORE INFORMATION


Lisa Aldrich

Amy Gomes

P.S. 15
71 Sullivan Street
Brooklyn, NY 11231
aldrichcb@aol.com
Principal
Kathleen Leonard

IMPACT II 
Catalog 2003-2004

 

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