Whealon, Terry O.
B.S.Ed. (Bachelor of Science in Education)
Department of Literacy and Elementary Education
Children learn through their experiences and through active participation. If this statement is true, then the child within the school setting must be taught according to this belief. Integrated curriculum allows for the student to connect all the disciplines of math, science, social studies, reading and other subjects and presents them with a clear, organized picture of the purpose and reason for learning. Hilda Taba designed an outline for integration that present students with real life problems and allows for the students to solve these problem. She believes that students, when presented with ideas and facts, will pull the information together and make their own generalizations about the situations and problems involved. I have chosen to follow this unit design and have based my integrated unit of study on this. The integrated unit involves a problem that the students are presented. How do we depend on our environment? This allows the students to question, do we depend on our environment and if so, how? Throughout the activities within the unit, many facts and ideas are presented in the form of hands-on activities and projects. These activities join the discipline of science with other subjects such as language arts, social studies and math. The students take the information and ideas that they are presented with and make their own educated decision regarding the problem of the unit. They are not restricted to one subject area but are allowed to use problem solving strategies based on information, ideas and evidence from all areas of the curriculum. This presents them with a real life setting and testifies to the importance of learning. The following ideas and lesson plans were designed to allow the students the opportunity to learn through using their experiences and permitting them to become actively involved in their own learning by giving them choices. It permits the students to demonstrate their knowledge of the ecosystem by pulling their facts and ideas together to make good decisions. It also grants the teacher measurement opportunities through authentic forms of assessment. But most importantly, it illustrates the importance of learning to the students and grants them the understanding as to why learning is essential and how they can achieve it not only in the classroom but in real world situations.
Drummer, Diana J., "An integrated unit of study" (1997). Honors Capstones. 154.
122 pages (various pagings)
Northern Illinois University
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