• Lesson 3:  Michigan and the Theme of Place

     

    Big Ideas of the Lesson

     

     

    ·         To study a place geographers ask the question: What is the place like?

    ·         To answer that question geographers study the natural (physical) characteristics of the place.

    ·         Natural (physical) characteristics include landforms, bodies of water, vegetation and climate.

    ·         Special purpose maps can be used to learn about these natural (physical) characteristics.

    ·         Important landforms of Michigan include peninsulas, islands, mountain ranges and sand dunes.

    ·         Important bodies of water include the Great Lakes, inland lakes, rivers and waterfalls.

     

     
    Lesson Focus Questions:

    What are the differences between physical and human characteristics?

    Why do we use thematic maps?

     

    Content Expectations: 

    3-G1.0.2     Use thematic maps to identify and describe the physical and human characteristics

                      of Michigan.

     

    Key Concepts: place, Great Lakes

     

    Lesson Vocabulary: physical characteristics and human characteristics

     

    Students will know:  physical and human characteristics of Michigan 

    Students will be able to:  identify the difference between physical and human characteristics of a region 

    Student friendly language:  I can use a map to find cities, towns, roads, bridges, etc. and different landforms of Michigan.

     

    Abstract:  After reviewing physical and human characteristics from lesson 1, students use a variety of maps to identify and describe significant physical characteristics of Michigan including the Great Lakes, major rivers, major lakes, sand dune areas, etc. Students briefly look at how people interact with each of these physical characteristics (e.g. lakes are used for recreation, the Great Lakes are used for transportation). Significant human characteristics such as bridges, lighthouses, highways, and cities are explored. The lesson ends with a brief introduction to the concept of climate, connecting to science topics of weather and seasons. A simple explanation of lake effect will be included.

      

    Handouts:

     

    Lesson Resources: 

     3-G1.0.2

    United Streaming Resources:

    G1.0.2

    • Different Types of maps-Thematic Maps [segment (3:52)]

    Instructional Resources

    Equipment/Manipulative

    Desktop maps of Michigan for students or a Michigan map from a textbook or a paper copy of a Michigan map

    Highlighters

    Overhead projector or document camera/projector

    Student journal or notebook

    Wall map of Michigan or overhead of a Michigan map

     

    Student Resource

    Dunes Photo Tour. 10 July 2009 <http://www.leelanau.com/dunes/tour/>.

     

    Kellogg, Steven. Paul Bunyan. New York: HarperCollins, 1985.

     

    Lewis, Ann Margaret. Sleeping Bear, the Legend. Traverse City, MI: Mackinac Island Press, 2007.

     

    McConnell, David. Meet Michigan. Hillsdale, MI: Hillsdale Educational Publishers, 2009. 5, 17-19, 21, 32.

     

    Photographs of Tahquemenon Falls. 10 July 2009 <http://www.exploringthenorth.com/tahqua/tahqua.html>.

     

    Sleeping Bear Dunes Kids Site. 10 July 2009 <http://www.nps.gov/slbe/forkids/index.htm>.

     

    Wargin, Kathy-Jo. Legend of Sleeping Bear. Chelsea, Michigan: Sleeping Bear Press, 1998.

     

    Teacher Resource

    Egbo, Carol. Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3). Teacher-made material. Michigan Citizenship Collaborative Curriculum, 2009.

     


     

     Lesson Sequence

    1.    Referring back to Lesson 1 remind students that geographers study a place by asking questions and trying to find the answers to the questions. Remind them that one of the questions is: What is the place like? Explain that to answer this question geographers study the natural (physical) and human characteristics of the place. Review these terms which were explored in Lesson 1.

     

    2.    Using Word Card #14, define the term ‘landforms’ and as a class list landforms which students learned about in previous grades. Note that these are likely to include mountains, hills, plains and islands. Using Word Card #15, explain the term ‘peninsula’ and point out the Lower and Upper Peninsula on a wall map or overhead of a Michigan map and have students do the same on a desktop map or paper map. Explain that the fact that the state of Michigan is made up of two peninsulas makes it a very unique state. Ask students to locate other peninsulas of Michigan such as the ‘thumb’, the Leelanau Peninsula and the Keweenaw Peninsula.  Note that page 5 in Meet Michigan or a similar page from another textbook can be used to reinforce this step.

     

    3.    Use Word Card #16 to review the term ‘island’ and guide students in identifying important islands on their Michigan maps such as Mackinac Island, Isle Royale and Beaver Island.

     

    4.    Explain that there are many different kinds of maps of Michigan besides the desktop or paper map they have been using. Using Word Card #17 explain that these maps are called ‘special purpose maps’ because they tend to show just one type of natural (physical) or human characteristic of a place.

     

    5.    Make and display an overhead of the Michigan Elevation Map located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3). Using Word Card #18, explain that this special purpose map shows the different elevations of Michigan, or the high and low places. Explain to students that this map shows highest places with the color brown, medium high places are shown in tan, and lower places are shown in green. Pose the following question: what does this map show us about Michigan? Discuss student responses. Note that possible answers include:

    ·         The highest parts of Michigan are found in the western part of the Upper Peninsula.

    ·         There are two really high areas in the west part of the Upper Peninsula.

    ·         There is a high area in the northern part of the lower Peninsula.

    ·         Along most of the coasts it is low.

    ·         Most of the islands are low land.

     

    6.    Use Word Card #19 to introduce the term ‘mountain range’ and point out the Huron Mountains on the Michigan map. Explain that our highest point, Mt. Arvon, is part of this mountain range. Explain that this mountain is about 2000 feet high, which would be about 20 single story schools placed on top of each other. Explain that although this seems high, it is a very short mountain compared to many other mountains in the United States. Explain that Michigan has another mountain range called the Porcupine Mountains. These are located close to Lake Superior in the far west part of Michigan.  Note that page 32 in Meet Michigan or a similar page from another textbook can be used to reinforce this step.

     

    7.    Make an overhead of the “Landforms of Michigan” informational text selection located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3)   and give each student a copy of the article and a highlighter.  Using your own highlighter, guide students in identifying the main ideas of the four sections of the article. Make sure to explain the use of bold text as a text feature.

     

    8.    Give each student a copy of the “Landforms Reference Chart” located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3) and ask students to explain how this chart is different from the informational text article. Discuss student responses and guide students in understanding that the chart summarizes the information about landforms and does not use complete sentences in each section.

     

    9.    Give students word card #20, sand dunes.  Review the information about sand dunes on the landforms chart and explain that sand dunes are one of Michigan’s most special natural (physical) characteristics. Share the following information about sand dunes:

    ·         Michigan’s has the largest amount of fresh water dunes in the world.

    ·         The dunes support a wide variety of habitats from cool forests of maple trees to the windy environment of open dunes.

    ·         Michigan sand dunes have many uses. People use them for tourism, photography, nature study and recreation.

    ·         Michigan sand dunes support many threatened and endangered species.

    ·         The state of Michigan and the United States government work to manage and protect Michigan’s sand dunes.

     

    10.  Show students photographs of sand dunes from a website such as the following: <http://www.leelanau.com/dunes/tour/>.

     

    11. Read students the book “Legend of the Sleeping Bear” by Kathy-Jo Wargin. Discuss how this Ojibwe legend explains the creation of the sleeping bear dunes and the two islands near the dunes.  If time permits read students another version of the legend such as “Sleeping Bear, the Legend” by Ann Margaret Lewis and do a cross-text comparison. Make sure to discuss the idea that as legends are passed down from person to person different versions of the original legend appear.

     

    12. Explain that bodies of water are another set of very important natural (physical) characteristics of Michigan. As a class, list bodies of water which students learned about in previous grades. Note that these are likely to include oceans, rivers and lakes.

     

    13. Give each student a copy of the outline map of Michigan located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3) and make an overhead of the map. Guide students in identifying the Great Lakes on the map. An easy way for students to remember the names of the Great Lakes is to use the pneumonic HOMES. (Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, Superior). Give students Word Card #21 and briefly describe how the Great Lakes are probably Michigan’s most significant natural (physical) characteristic. Note that pages 17-19 in Meet Michigan or similar pages from another textbook can be used to reinforce this step.

     

    14. Using Word Card #22, introduce the term ‘bay’ and guide students in labeling “Saginaw Bay’ and ‘Grand Traverse Bay’ on their outline maps.

     

    15. Divide students in pairs and give each pair a copy of the “Bodies of Water of Michigan” informational text selection and the incomplete “Bodies of Water Chart” located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3). Point out that in order to complete the chart students must read the informational article and find one important fact and one Michigan example for each body of water listed on the chart. Remind students to use a highlighter and use the same strategies you modeled in Step 7 as they read the article and look for information. Note that an “Completed Chart” with sample answers has been included in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3)  for you to use as reference.

     

    16. Give pairs time to complete the activity and have them share what they wrote on their charts. Note that as an alternative you could have students complete the activity independently either in class or as homework.

     

    17. Guide students in adding and labeling the following to their outline map: the Grand River and Tahquamenon Falls. If time permits show students photos the Falls at the following website: <http://www.exploringthenorth.com/tahqua/tahqua.html>.

     

    18. Give students Word Card #23 and discuss the term ‘glacier.’ Explain that glaciers helped to form many of the natural (physical) characteristics of Michigan students have been learning about so far in this lesson. Make and display the “Glaciers and Michigan’s Geography” located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3) and  go over the information on the overhead. Note that page 21 in Meet Michigan or a similar page from another textbook can be used to reinforce this step.

     

    19. If time permits read students the book “Paul Bunyan” by Steven Kellogg and explore how this author offers a very different explanation of how the Great Lakes were formed. Discuss the term folktale with students.  Describe elements of the folktale genre with students.  Guide them to understand the differences between legends and folktales.

      

    Assessment

    An assessment in which students identify and describe important natural (physical) characteristics of Michigan by completing a chart has been included in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 3). As an additional assessment students could be given a special purpose map and asked to identify and describe natural (physical) characteristics shown on the map.

                                                                          
     
     Lesson 4:  The Natural Resources of Michigan

     

    Big Ideas of the Lesson

     

     

    ·         To study a place geographers ask the question: What is the place like?

    ·         To answer that question geographers study the natural (physical) characteristics of the place.

    ·         Natural characteristics include landforms, bodies of water, vegetation and climate.

    ·         Special purpose maps can be used to learn about these natural (physical) characteristics.

    ·         Forests and orchards are important types of vegetation in Michigan.

    ·         Michigan’s climate has four seasons and is influenced by the Great Lakes.

     

     

    Lesson Focus Questions:

    What natural resources are found in Michigan?

    Can you label them on a map?

    How does the use of natural resources affect the environment?

     

    Content Expectations:

    3-G5.0.1      Locate natural resources in Michigan and explain the consequences of their use.

     

    Key Concepts: natural resources, human/environment interaction

     

    Lesson Vocabulary: natural resources, consequences

     

    Students will know: 
    • natural resources found within Michigan 
    • consequences of using natural resources 

    Students will be able to:

    • locate natural resources on a map of Michigan
    • explain the consequences of the use of natural resources

    Student friendly language:

    • I can label natural resources found in Michigan on a map.
    • I can explain what happens to the environment when natural resources are used.

    Abstract:  This lesson builds on the content of lesson 3 relating to physical characteristics of Michigan. Literature, such as The Giving Tree, is used to illustrate the importance of natural resources. Emphasis is placed on water, fertile soil, forests and minerals as students explore how humans interact with the environment.

      

    Handouts:

     

    Lesson Resources:

    •  Geisel, Theodor Seuss. The Lorax. New York: Random House, 1971.
    • MacGill-Callahan, Sheila. And Still the Turtle Watched. New York: Dial Books, 1991.
    • Van Allsburg, Chris. Just a Dream. New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1990.
    • *Department of Environmental Quality. 23 Jan. 2008 <http://www.michigan.gov/deq>.
    • *Department of Natural Resources. 23 Jan. 2008 <http://www.michigan.gov/dnr>..
    • *Environmental Briefing Book, 2005-2006. Michigan Environmental Council. 29 Jan. 2008   <http://www.mecprotects.org/05briefingbook.pdf>.
    United Streaming Resources:
    G5.0.1
    • Learning about Natural Resources (22:00)
    • Water Smart: Water As Natural Resource (15:03)
    • Uses of Rocks and Minerals (18:00)

    Instructional Resources

    Equipment/Manipulative

    Desktop maps of Michigan for students or a Michigan map from a textbook or a paper copy of a Michigan map

    Highlighters

    Overhead projector or document camera/projector

    Student journal or notebook

    Wall map of Michigan or overhead of a Michigan map

     

    Student Resource

    McConnell, David. Meet Michigan. Hillsdale, MI: Hillsdale Educational Publishers, 2009. 9-11, 20.

     

    Michigan’s State Symbols. 10 July 2009 <http://www.michigan.gov/documents/mhc_mhm_statesymbols2002_47909_7.pdf>.

     

    Teacher Resource

    Egbo, Carol. Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 4). Teacher-made material. Michigan Citizenship Collaborative Curriculum, 2009.

     

    Michigan Forests Maps. 10 July 2009 <http://mff.dsisd.net/Recreation/Ownership.htm>.

     

    Michigan Orchards Map. 10 July 2009 <http://www.michiganfruitbelt.org/picture_library/orchard-map.jpg>.

     

     

     Lesson Sequence

    1.    Referring back to Lesson 3, briefly review the important landforms and bodies of water studied in the lesson. 

     

    2.    Using Word Card #24, introduce the term “vegetation” and explain that Michigan has many important types of plants, or vegetation. Explain that vegetation is another type of natural (physical) characteristic. Explain that special purpose maps can be used to study vegetation as well as landforms and bodies of water.

     

    3.    Make and display an overhead of the “Michigan Forests Maps” located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 4). Guide students in describing the location of both National and State Forests in Michigan. Share the following information as you discuss the two maps:

    ·         National forests are managed by our nation’s government. They are recognized as being important to our whole country.

    ·         State forests are managed by our state government. Michigan has the largest state forest system of any state except Alaska.

    ·         If you were to overlay the maps of the national forests and the state forests you would see that much of the Upper Peninsula is forest.

     

    4.    Next, point out the “Michigan Commercial Forests” map and explain that this term refers to forests that are used to harvest and sell trees for paper, lumber and other tree products. Ask students what they notice about the location of the commercial forests. Discuss student responses and guide students to the idea that they are all located in the Upper Peninsula. Explain that later when they learn about Michigan history they will learn about the growth and development of lumbering in Michigan.

     

    5.    Make and display an overhead of the “Michigan Orchards” map located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 4).  Ask students how the location of orchards in Michigan differs from the location of forests. Then, pose the following question: What might we conclude about the location of orchards and the Great Lakes? Discuss student responses and guide them to the idea that orchards are often found along the shores of the Great Lakes.

     

    6.    Explain that every state has State Symbols which reflect the natural (physical) characteristics of the state. Note that pages 9-11 in Meet Michigan or similar pages from another textbook can be used to explore the state symbols. Give each student a copy of the “State Symbols Chart” and the “Reading a Chart” question sheet located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 4). Make an overhead of the Chart and go over the name of each symbol with students.

     

    7.    Divide students in pairs and have pairs use the chart to answer the questions on the “Reading a Chart” sheet. This assignment could be given as homework. Note that an answer sheet has been included in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 4) for you to use as a reference. Also note that a brochure of the state symbols can be downloaded from the following website: <http://www.michigan.gov/documents/mhc_mhm_statesymbols2002_47909_7.pdf . This brochure provides good illustrations of each of the symbols.

     

    8.    Remind students that they have now explored important landforms, bodies of water, and vegetation of Michigan. They have seen how these natural (physical) characteristics are reflected in our state symbols. Write the term ‘climate’ on a board or overhead and give students Word Card #25. Explain that climate is another important natural (physical) characteristic they will need to explore in order to understand the geography of Michigan.

     

    9.    Explain that although the term ‘climate’ might be new to them they have been studying climate since kindergarten as they learned about weather and the seasons. Pose the following question: How many seasons does Michigan have? Briefly discuss Michigan’s four seasons and important characteristics of each season.

     

    10. Explain that geographers explore the climate of a place by studying the different seasons. Using Word Cards #26 and #27, explain that geographers also explore climate by studying the temperature and precipitation of a place.

     

    11. Make and display an overhead of the “Michigan Temperature and Precipitation Maps” located in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 4). Cover the bottom map and explain that on the temperature tap the warmest places are in red and the coldest in blue. Ask students to draw some conclusions about temperatures in Michigan based on the map. Note that possible conclusions include:

    ·         The Lower Peninsula is warmer than the Upper Peninsula.

    ·         The northern part of the Lower Peninsula is colder than the southern part.

    ·         There are a couple of places in the Lower Peninsula that are as cold as the Upper Peninsula.

     

    12. Cover the top map and expose the bottom map. Explain that as colors move from blue to brown areas get less and less precipitation. Ask students to identify the areas of Michigan that get the most precipitation. Note that these areas are in the southwest part of the Lower Peninsula, along the Lake Huron shore of the “thumb” of Michigan and in the far western part of the Upper Peninsula. Then, guide students in identifying the areas that get the least precipitation.

     

    13. Explain that the climate of Michigan is influenced by the Great Lakes. Explain that being near large bodies of water can impact both temperature and precipitation. Note that because this concept of ‘lake effect’ is complex for third graders to understand you need only to introduce it at the ‘awareness level’. In grade 4 they will explore this issue in depth. Note that a very simple explanation of ‘Lake Effect’ is included on page 20 of Meet Michigan listed in the Student Resources.

     

    Assessment

    An assessment in which students identify and describe important natural (physical) characteristics of Michigan has been included in the Supplemental Materials (Unit 1, Lesson 4). As an additional assessment students could be given a special purpose map and asked to identify and describe natural (physical) characteristics shown on the map.

Last Modified on February 14, 2018