Read All About It! Great Places to Visit in North Carolina

Learning outcomes

Students will:

  • Use the NC Literary Map Cultural Resources website to gather information about cultural and historic sites/events in each geographic region of NC.
  • Organize, record and disperse information by creating a magazine cover and writing a magazine article that highlights a cultural or historic site/event in NC.

Time required for lesson: at least 3 class sessions

  • 1 for previewing online resources
  • 1 for gathering and recording information
  • 1 for creating magazine cover and writing article
  • Time to share magazine covers and articles

Materials/resources

  • Access to the internet, Microsoft Word or other publishing program, printer
  • Copies of magazines such as Our State, Southern Living, WNC, etc.
  • Websites bookmarked on student computers
  • Planning Sheet for collecting information about historic/cultural sites and recording citations
  • Paper, pencils for Frayer Model chart

Pre-activities

  1. Draw a Frayer Model and post it in the classroom. Use the model with the students to discuss what a historic or cultural site is and why people would want to visit one in the state of NC. Follow this process for completing the model:
    • Characteristics — Have students list characteristics of a historic or cultural site (unique physical characteristics; tells the story of a historical figure, place, or time period; relays the development, heritage, or culture of a region; etc.)
    • Examples — Have students brainstorm examples of historic sites that they have visited or read about (local museum, Vietnam Memorial, Statue of Liberty…)
    • Non-examples — Have students brainstorm examples of places that they have visited that they don’t think would be considered historic sites (amusement parks, shopping malls, etc.).
    • Definition — Taking into account the characteristics, examples, and non-examples, allow students to create a definition of a historic or cultural site.
    Keep the Frayer Model posted in the classroom to use as a reference throughout the lesson.
  2. Preview magazines such as Southern Living, WNC Magazine, and Our State that have information about sites to visit or events to attend in NC. Discuss the cover layouts, share a few articles with students, then discuss the types of information that makes them interesting and informative to the reader.
  3. Preview the NC Literary Map Cultural Resources website with students to discover web resources related to historic and cultural sites/events. As you preview, discuss which resources listed may be most beneficial in discovering information about cultural and/or historical sites/events in NC. Discuss possible search terms for students to use as they navigate the cultural resources web pages (historical site names, types of places to visit, cultural venues…).
  4. Preview the Big Huge Lab Magazine Cover Creator website to demonstrate how to create, save and print a magazine cover.
  5. Distribute grading rubrics to establish standards. If possible, show examples of finished magazine covers and articles to use as models.

Activities

Divide the class into three groups: Mountains, Piedmont, and Coast. Students may work with a partner. Each set of partners will use the NC Literary Map Cultural Resources website to select a city, town or county to study in their region and promote it by

  • creating a magazine cover and
  • writing a short article highlighting historical/cultural sites or events located in the region (e.g. Mountains = Biltmore House, Grove Park Inn, Bele Chere Festival, LEAF, Apple Festival, Grandfather Mountain, Flat Rock Playhouse…)

Students may use the planning sheet to record information and citations as they gather data.

Students will use the Big Huge Lab Magazine Cover Creator to create their magazine covers.

Covers must include:

  1. A title which includes the region name
  2. A picture of an event or site from the region
  3. At least 3 taglines with sites/events to visit in the region

The article must include

  1. A description of the cultural/historic site/event and the surrounding area/region
  2. Planning information for attending at least one site/event: including location, cost of admission, and things to do or see
  3. Graphics that promote the selected cultural or historic site
  4. Citations for information and pictures used in the product

When the magazine covers and articles are complete, display them. Allow students time to read the covers and articles to learn about sites/events in each region,.

Assessment

  5 3 1
Coverage of the Topic Details on the magazine cover and in the article capture the important information about the site/event and increase the audience’s interest. Details on the magazine cover and in the article relate to the topic but are too general or incomplete. The audience needs more information. Details on the magazine cover and in the article have little or nothing to do with main topic.
Organization Information is very organized with clear titles and taglines. Information is organized, but titles and taglines are missing or do not enhance reader understanding. The information appears to be disorganized.
Sources All sources (information and graphics) are accurately documented. All sources (information and graphics) are documented, but information is incomplete or many are not in the desired format. Some sources are not accurately documented.
Use of Internet (Links Provided) Successfully uses suggested Internet links to find information and navigates within sites easily without assistance. Usually able to use suggested Internet links to find information and navigates within sites easily without assistance. Needs assistance or supervision to use suggested Internet links and/or to navigate within these sites.
Attractiveness Makes good use of font, color, graphics, effects, etc. to enhance the presentation. Most are related to the topic. Makes good use of font, color, graphics, effects, etc. to enhance the presentation. Most are related to the topic. Font, color, graphics, effects do not relate to the topic and do not enhance the presentation.
Use of Class Time The graphics go well with the text, and there is a good mix of text and graphics. The graphics go well with text, but there are some that distract from text. The graphics go well with the text, but there are too few.

Supplemental Information

Inspiration for this lesson was gleaned from Touring the Old North State, a lesson plan created by Andrea Stewart, Keisha Gabriel, and Patty Grant for Learn NC.

North Carolina Common Core/Essential Standards

Information and Technology Essential Standards

HS.TT1.1 Use technology and other resources for assigned tasks.

HS.SI.1 Evaluate resources needed to solve a given problem.

MS.SI.1 Evaluate information resources based on specified criteria.

MS.RP.1 Apply a research process for collaborative or individual research.

Writing: Anchor Standards

2. Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.

4. Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

6. Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.

7. Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.

8. Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.

10. Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences.

High School: English Language Arts/ Social Studies

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.7 Integrate and evaluate multiple sources of information presented in different media or formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively) as well as in words in order to address a question or solve a problem.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.2 Integrate multiple sources of information presented in diverse formats and media (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) in order to make informed decisions and solve problems, evaluating the credibility and accuracy of each source and noting any discrepancies among the data.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.4 Present information, findings, and supporting evidence, conveying a clear and distinct perspective, such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning, alternative or opposing perspectives are addressed, and the organization, development, substance, and style are appropriate to purpose, audience, and a range of formal and informal tasks.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.5 Make strategic use of digital media (e.g., textual, graphical, audio, visual, and interactive elements) in presentations to enhance understanding of findings, reasoning, and evidence and to add interest.

AH1.H.1.4 Use Historical Research to: 1. Formulate historical questions. 2. Obtain historical data from a variety of sources.

Middle School: English Language Arts/Social Studies

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.7 Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.6.7 Conduct short research projects to answer a question, drawing on several sources and refocusing the inquiry when appropriate.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.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.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.6.10 Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of discipline-specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.

Grade 8 Social Studies Essential Standard 8.H.3 Understand the factors that contribute to change and continuity in North Carolina and the United States.

Grade 8 SS ES 8.C.1 Understand how different cultures influenced North Carolina and the United States.