Prepared for Fairview Elementary
Society places certain expectations on students whether they complete
their educational career or not. Students are expected to:
Participate in the economy in different roles such as workers, consumers,
business owners and investors.
Exercise their civic duty by becoming a part of the political process through
voting and/or holding elected office.
Support themselves by selecting a career that will sustain them and their
families if they chose to have one.
The project approach is a promising practice for meeting the needs and
interest of today’s young students.
Project-based learning involves in-depth investigative activities that
culminate with a final product or debriefing event.
Some of the benefits of project based learning activities include developing
students’ higher level thinking skills such as problem solving, planning and
Students who engage in the project approach are more adept at
transferring conceptual ideas across a variety of learning situations.
Incorporating the use of Web 2.0 technologies with Project based learning
activities as a way to continue to facilitate learning for gifted students.
Students' communication skills, their problem-solving abilities, and their
capability to work as effective members of a team, which develop and
improve from collaborative learning activities, are all attributes highly
valued by future employers .
Fairview Elementary School has identified the
following as critical needs areas for student
Developing problem solving
Building critical thinking skills
Increasing communication skills
Transfer of knowledge learned in school to the real world
Engaging SAGE (gifted) students more
Preparing students for beyond school
The purpose of this project based learning proposal is to
encourage Fairview Elementary School in Henry County to
consider engaging 5th grade students in a project that explores the
basics functions of a society.
The concepts to be explored are economics (including a study of
currency), government, career choice and business start-up and
The final results of this venture would be the creation of classroom
societies modeled after what students learn during project based
SS5CG1 The student will explain how a citizen’s rights are protected under the U.S.
a. Explain the responsibilities of a citizen.
SS4CG3 The student will describe the functions of government.
a. Explain the process for making and enforcing laws.
b. Explain managing conflicts and protecting rights.
c. Describe providing for the defense of the nation.
d. Explain limiting the power of people in authority.
e. Explain the fiscal responsibility of government.
SS5E2 The student will describe the functions of four major sectors in the U. S.
a. Describe the household function in providing resources and consuming goods and
b. Describe the private business function in producing goods and services.
c. Describe the bank function in providing checking accounts, savings accounts, and
d. Describe the government function in taxation and providing certain goods and services.
SS5E3 The student will describe how consumers and businesses interact in the U.
a. Describe how competition, markets, and prices influence people’s behavior.
b. Describe how people earn income by selling their labor to businesses.
c. Describe how entrepreneurs take risks to develop new goods and services to start a
SS5E4 The student will identify the elements of a personal budget and explain why
personal spending and saving decisions are important.
M5P4. Students will make connections among mathematical ideas and to other
a. Recognize and use connections among mathematical ideas.
b. Understand how mathematical ideas interconnect and build on one another to produce
a coherent whole.
c. Recognize and apply mathematics in contexts outside of mathematics
Standard 1: The student who is information literate accesses information efficiently
The student who is information literate recognizes that having good information is central
to meeting the opportunities and challenges of day-to-day living. That student knows
when to seek information beyond his or her personal knowledge, how to frame questions
that will lead to the appropriate information, and where to seek that information. The
student knows how to structure a search across a variety of sources and formats to
locate the best information to meet a particular need.
Standard 9: The student who contributes positively to the learning community and to society is
information literate and participates effectively in groups to pursue and generate information.
The student who is socially responsible with regard to information works successfully—both locally
and through the variety of technologies that link the learning community—to access, evaluate, and use
information. That student seeks and shares information and ideas across a range of sources and
perspectives and acknowledges the insights and contributions of a variety of cultures and disciplines.
The student collaborates with diverse individuals to identify information problems, to seek their
solutions, and to communicate these solutions accurately and creatively.
In keeping with the mission and vision of Fairview Elementary school, this project based
learning module was developed to enhance students’ critical thinking skills and to prepare
them for the world outside of school. Additionally students, staff and community members will
work within a collaborative framework while engaging in the project. This project is also in line
with the mission of the Georgia Department of Education in its’ efforts to prepare all students
for college or a career.
Who: This project is designed for use by 5th grade teachers and students of Fairview Elementary
School but involves other outside sources as local experts.
What: Students will study various aspects of a society such as government, banking, career
choice and starting and owning a business. Students will incorporate the use of different
technologies like Blogger, Voice Thread, and Comic Life during this course of study. Each
classroom will work to create classroom “mini-societies”. These societies are required to include
(but are not limited to) a form of government, a banking system, and various jobs that students
may select. Students’ business ownership opportunities should be included as well.
When: This project is designed to be completed over the course of eight to twelve weeks which
is equivalent to a grading period in most elementary schools.
Why: This proposal was developed out from the desire to better prepare students to meet the
challenges of fulfilling their daily roles in society and to develop critical thinking and
communication skills through collaboration.
5th Grade Teachers
5 Highly qualified teachers with a combined total of 40+ years of teaching
Prior to key instructional activities teachers who have not participated in staff
development opportunities with the various technologies (Comic Life, Blogger and
Voice Thread) will be provided an opportunity to attend informational sessions on
All teachers have had the opportunity to attend the Mini-society training provided by
the Henry County School system but those teachers new to fifth grade are currently
enrolled in the county wide bi-monthly training meetings.
5th Grade Students
Each fifth grade class (130 total students) will participate all of the instructional
activities in order to create their classroom society. They will work in small
collaborative groups to complete the activities.
Students will be introduced to the various technologies (Comic Life, Blogger and
Voice Thread) prior to beginning the Mini-Society unit during the classroom rotation
to the school computer lab. This introduction will be done by the Instructional
To teach students various business structures and the roles they
play in society.
To develop and experience real world examples in context of
citizenship, economics, career and government.
To teach students how to discover and set goals for achievement.
To teach students the importance of cooperation.
To teach students an attitude of spirit of entrepreneurship
Knowledge: (The student will know )
There are certain responsibilities of citizens.
The government functions to manage conflicts and protect the
rights of citizens.
Citizens help the economy function by providing resources and
consuming goods and services.
Private businesses help the economy function by producing goods
Banks help the economy function in providing checking accounts,
savings accounts, and loans.
People earn income by selling their labor to businesses.
People make choices about their careers.
Entrepreneurs take risks to develop new goods and services to
start a business.
Skills: (The student will be able to)
Module Week Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Pre-Planning 01 Google Docs Google Docs Google Docs Google Docs Google Docs
Brainstorming Brainstorming Brainstorming Brainstorming Brainstorming
Review of or Review of or Review of or Review of or Review of or
Introduction to Introduction to Introduction to Introduction to Introduction to
use of Comic Life use of Comic Life use of Comic Life use of Comic Life use of Comic Life
, Voice Thread, , Voice Thread, , Voice Thread, , Voice Thread, , Voice Thread,
Blogger Blogger Blogger Blogger Blogger
*Prior to unit *Prior to unit *Prior to unit *Prior to unit *Prior to unit
students will be students will be students will be students will be students will be
introduced to the introduced to the introduced to the introduced to the introduced to the
technologies by technologies by technologies by technologies by technologies by
the I.T.S during the I.T.S during the I.T.S during the I.T.S during the I.T.S during
their computer their computer their computer their computer their computer
lab time. lab time. lab time. lab time. lab time.
01 - business 02 Students will Students will Students will post Students will Groups will
start up work in generate a list of questions to their generate a list of brainstorm and
collaborative questions about blog and begin a ideas for their start to create a
groups to set up starting a small dialogue with a business. They prototype for their
a group blog for business to post local business will determine if good with a cost
interaction with a on their group owner. *This blog they will provide plan or market
business owner blog for a local will be an on- a good or survey with a
from the business owner going source for service. Groups cost plan.
community to respond to. students will pitch their
to their group
produce for their
02 - career 03 Students will Students will Students will Students will Students will
choice pick a career visit the site use class time use class time display their
from a person listed below to to type out the to gather board at a
in their family get additional answers to images (with career fair.
to interviews background their interview proper They will be
information questions. citations) and interviewed by
about the Students will complete their other fifth
family be required to poster board grade teachers
member's use the word for display on and
career. application, the fifth day. administrators.
http://www.bls. using correct
gov/k12/ grammar, and
to learn what citations.
is involved in
03 - Banking 04 Creation of Completion of Opening of Reconciling of Summarize
Comic life for Comic Life for “bank account” account. activities and
“cost of living” “cost of living” with starting put together
fund of $100.00 banking packet
each stage by
04 – Government 05 Creation of Bill of Creation of Bill of Creation of Bill of Creation of Bill of Creation of Bill of
Rights Graphic Rights Graphic Rights Graphic Rights Graphic Rights Graphic
Organizer and Organizer and Organizer and Organizer and Organizer and
Student Lead Student Lead Student Lead Student Lead Student Lead
Discussion based Discussion based Discussion based Discussion based Discussion based
on Bill of Rights on Bill of Rights on Bill of Rights on Bill of Rights on Bill of Rights
Graphic Organizer. Graphic Organizer. Graphic Organizer. Graphic Organizer. Graphic Organizer.
04 – Government 06 Introduction to Work in Computer Work in Computer Present Bill of Present Bill of
Continued Bill of Rights Lab on Bill of Lab on Bill of Rights Rights
VoiceThread Rights Rights VoiceThread VoiceThread
Assignment VoiceThread VoiceThread Assignment Assignment
05 - business 07 Whole Group Purpose of Market Day - Students will Ebook
ownership Instruction - businesses in Create your complete an presentations
What is a society . own unique ebook that and brochures
Business? Discuss product/service introduces
What is disadvantages/ s that can be product/service
Business advantages sold to your s, target
Ownership? of various classmates audience, price,
What are the business forms. Activity sheet etc.
different forms Intoduce
of business? concept of
06 ‑ Final 08 The final event
Assesment for each class
will be a market
day event for
Claritt- Career Choice
Davis-Starting a Business
Classroom materials for Mini-Society- $600 ($100 per classroom) *provided
annually by PTSA
Comic Life (Seat license for 250 computers)- $499.00
Miscellaneous including teacher training expenses (copies, refreshments,
Total anticipated expenses: PTSA- $600
Fairview - $699
Existing Resources at Fairview
Mini-Society Resources provided by The Georgia Council on Economic
Computers with Microsoft Office and Internet access
Smart boards, Doc Cameras, Active Hubs and Slates
Microsoft Office Suite
Internet Access (Voice Thread, Blogger, etc…)
Services from school personnel
School Library Media Specialist
Instructional Technology Specialist
Partners in Education
Parents who own and operate small business
Local Political leaders
Potential Challenges and
Inability to access Web 2.0 technologies because of
school internet filtering system
Insufficient time and funding of need materials
Lack of teacher knowledge about using Web 2.o
Lack of teach knowledge about use of Project-
Based learning activities
Unwillingness of all team members (teachers
and/or students) to fully participate
Unanticipated Benefits and
Rewards for Stakeholders
Responsibility of own learning
Decrease in discipline problems
Increase collaboration with colleagues
Better classroom management
Increased time on task
Less office referrals for discipline
Community Business Members
Increased involvement in the schools in a role other than financial
Possible increase in business
Did the lesson/s depart from what you had
planned in any way?
If yes, why did you think this was so?
Did your learners learn anything in this
lesson/s additional to what you had
If yes, why do you think this was so? do
Having taught these lessons, will you
anything differently the next time you
implement a project of this sort?
If yes, say what you will change and try to
Briefly describe the ways in which
participation in this module has influenced
your classroom practice, if at all.
Try to explain how or why this was so.
How was this learning experience different
from others you have experienced?
Did you learn something unexpected during
these learning activities? If so what?
What would you want your teacher do
differently next time? What would you do
differently next time you have this type of
Do you think what you learned during this
unit will help you in life outside of school? If
Project-based learning is an instructional model that
involves students in investigations of compelling
problems that culminate in authentic products.
Students become more engaged in learning when they
have a chance to dig into complex, challenging, and
sometimes even messy problems that closely resemble
Projects grow out of challenging questions that cannot
be answered by rote learning
Projects place students in active roles and serve
specific, significant educational goals; they are not
diversions or an add-on to the "real" curriculum.
Eckstein, M. (2009). Gifted and talented education for the 21st century. Enrichment 2.0 , 32 (1), 59-63.
Retrieved November 5, 2009, from Ebscohost.
Kapp, E. (2009). Improving student teamwork in a collaborative project-based course. College Teaching , 57
(3), 139-143. Retrieved November 5, 2009, from Ebscohost.
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