Students will study philanthropists and environmentalists through literature and research on environmental issues. Students choose one environmental issue to research such as recycling, landfills, rainforests, acid rain, global warming, water pollution, air pollution and energy. Students’ research and responses to the issues are presented in a culminating puppet play. They will conduct research, write scripts, make puppets from recycled materials and perform plays for others in their community. By performing these puppet shows, students will become environmentalists and philanthropists themselves as they educate and motivate others on these issues. They will be asked to think about the link between philanthropy, their environment and active citizenship.
The learner will:
- research an environmental problem and find at least ten facts about it.
- find information from at least three different sources.
- write a summary of facts.
- write a script for a puppet show using the research from Lesson One: Digging Up the Facts.
- record his/her script onto a cassette tape.
- create a puppet using primarily trash items.
- learn about some different types of puppets and how they work.
- perform a puppet play for other students and adults/parents.
- use a puppet to communicate his/her ideas.
- teach others about various environmental problems and solutions.
- reflect on the essential questions of the unit and write a piece on being an environmental philanthropist.
The experiential component for this unit centers around a final puppet show performance. The show is created solely by the students. Throughout the unit they will gather research on an environmental issue, put this research into a story and script, record the script and create puppets. Finally, the students invite classmates, staff, parents and community members to watch their puppet show. Through the puppet performances, students educate others on these issues facing our world today and hopefully make people more aware of the problems and what they can do to help.
The Teacher assesses student participation and writing through three rubrics:
Lesson Two: A-Scripting We Will Go:
Rubric for Script
Research – Includes at least five facts about an environmental issue.
Research – Includes at least five ways to work toward solving the environmental issue.
Demonstrates understanding of issue.
Correct use of _____-grade grammar and spelling
Script written in dialogue format with no narrator.
Script includes at least two sound effects.
Script includes a setting (time and place).
Script includes a problem/solution.
Script includes a beginning/middle/end.
Cooperation within group
Lesson Three: Garbage—A Puppet’s Paradise:
Rubric for Recycled Puppets
Used at least five pieces of trash
Student can identify the type of puppet it is
Student can move puppet to communicate ideas
Lesson Four: Philanthropic Puppets on Parade:
Rubric for Performance and Understanding
Reflection writing (Scale of 1 to 6 based on school writing rubric)
Cooperation and team work
Performance (puppet use, timing, technical)
"Copy-and-Paste" Class/School Newsletter Information Insert:
In our class, we are working on a unit called, "Pitch In: A Puppet Performance." During the next few weeks we will be studying various problems and issues facing our environment today. We will also be reading literature and viewing websites to learn about philanthropists that are working to help our environment by giving of their time, talents and treasures to help their planet Earth.
We are going to be creating puppets and writing puppet play scripts to perform for our school classmates and our local community members. By doing this, we hope to educate others and raise awareness on issues that concern our environment and what we can do to help.
To help us with this endeavor, we would like you to start collecting various trash items in your house. Some ideas include Styrofoam meat trays, plastic containers (salad dressing, margarine tubs, sour cream, dish soap), dowels or old broom handles, foam, tissue paper, tinfoil, fabric or ribbon scraps, paper towel/toilet paper rolls, yarn, etc…
Interactive Parent/Student Homework:
Send home a letter informing parents of the unit and requesting they send to school a variety of "garbage" that can be reused for making puppets. (See Attachment One: Family Letter in Lesson One: Digging for Facts.)
Lesson Four: Philanthropic Puppets on Parade – Students should write thank-you notes to all parent volunteers or community members that helped.
See individual lessons for benchmark detail.
Lessons Developed By:
Mona Shores Public Schools
Lincoln Park Elementary
2951 Leon Street
Muskegon, MI 49441
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