Americans of Rockland County
Project URL: www.teachersnetwork.org/teachnetusa/jfuchs/webquest.htm
This program is particularly valuable in teaching students the
research process. Students gain an understanding of Native
American cultures through
the use of both secondary and primary sources. The curriculum unit is the fourth grade study of Native Americans in
New York State. The students are shown some old Indian arrowheads and
challenged to find out about them. Students learn how
primary sources such as artifacts are used to gain an understanding of
history. It is a joint project with the classroom teacher and the
school library media specialist. The students set up their
research project by brainstorming ideas about what the artifacts
are. This brainstorming activity is recorded with the use of the
Inspiration software program. The research project will be set up using a WebQuest
Students use a
variety of intellectual skills to demonstrate their understanding of
major ideas, eras, themes, developments, and turning points in the
history of the United States and New York. They access, generate, process, and transfer information
using appropriate technologies.
Students need access to
books from the school library on their topic. (Students from class
can be selected to print a bibliography using the electronic catalog.
They can then pull the books and place them on a special cart for
classroom and library use.) A computer with Internet access and
word processing software is required. An excellent video is
"Arrowheads, Blades &
Knives" (produced by Burning Buffalo Productions and available from Anderson
This program is intended to be coordinated with the library media
Native Americans of Rockland
County is designed for fourth grade social studies
students. It can be extended to higher grade
levels. Prior to beginning, students need to be familiar
with navigating a WebQuest.
This program creates an interest in Native Americans on the part of students,
who are introduced to the topic through the use of
actual Native American artifacts. Teachers will
want to adapt this project for their classes because it is flexible
and offers a unique opportunity to integrate many areas of the
curriculum into one project.
The lesson is organized around the Big6 Research Method using the
WebQuest model. It is intended to integrate classroom
instruction with library media instruction. As an introduction,
students are given the arrowheads to handle and examine. Naturally, the
arrowheads will generate some excitement and interest on the part of
students. Students are then encouraged to ask questions about the
arrowheads. Inspiration software is used to record the students'
About the teachers:
Jennifer Fuchs teaches fourth-grade social studies at Bardonia.
She has a BS in Education concentrating in History from St. Thomas
Aquinas College. She is in the Master's degree program in Literacy at
Anne Bryant is the library assistant at Bardonia. She has also worked
as the computer lab coordinator and director of the publishing center
at an elementary school. She is in the MLS program at Long Island
Mike Frerichs is the library media specialist for Bardonia. He
his MLS from SUNY Albany. He also worked as an attorney for 19 years.