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This unit is designed to educate students on the 12 most common belief systems (religions/philosophies) in the world today through web-based research: Baha’i, Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Judaism, Shinto, Sikhism, Taoism and Zoroastrianism; while at the same time facilitating the development of opinions on spiritual matters, teaching tolerance, and strengthening student writing through daily prompts and a final technology based project and an extension creative writing project. A final assessment utilizing student research is provided.
Students will use the World Belief Systems Google Site to do their research and will create their own website (alone or collaboratively) modeled after it.
Included in the bundle are daily lesson plans with objectives and standards. All standards come from Common Core and the social studies standards in the state of Maryland.
There are PowerPoint presentations to guide the learning leading up to the creation of a website. Each lesson opens with a higher order thinking question designed to develop opinions and teach tolerance. Questions can be presented in Spanish and English, or with sentence starters. Both options are available in different folders.
There is a student friendly rubric based on the WIDA writing rubric which should be used daily to evaluate student writing and allow opportunities for teachers to conference with students on how to move to the next level. Tools to create online forums in Google Classroom are included as an option.
Following a daily period where students write their answers, students should be encouraged to share their answers orally and respond to each other, allowing an opportunity for students to engage in a class discussion around the questions. There is an option to allow students to answer digitally on a document and give each other feedback. This can be a great differentiation tool if students do better after seeing other students' responses and use them as models.
Resources are included to scaffold assignments for ESOL and SPED students.
An extension activity allowing for creative writing and art is included.