Task #4- Unit Rationale

Essential Questions:
What is family? What does family mean to me?

General Enduring Understanding:
Students will gain a greater understanding for their own family and cultural background by studying Science, English and History.

Specific Enduring Understanding:
1) Adolescents
Understanding the experiences and views of your ancestors and how they have subsequently affected your own can be very powerful, especially for a high school student who is formulating their identity and relationship with civil society.

2) Each Academic Area
When a student takes an in–depth look into their own origin, they get a better understanding of themselves and where they come from. When this is applied to a student’s Civic Ancestry they get a meaningful portrait of how their parents, grandparents, etc. feel/felt about social issues, the role of government, and their relationship with government. Students also begin to understand how their ancestors’ experiences affected their political stances and those of ensuing generations. Lastly, students are able to (re) formulate their own stances on contemporary issues, government’s role in society, and their relationship with government.

3) Other Related Areas
This topic can also be applied very easily to Algebra 2 standard 22.0. A full understanding of Genealogy/Family History can help or be helped by applying the Geometric Sequence an = 2n, where n=number of steps up the family tree and 2n = number of ancestors at that level. Therefore without stepping up the ladder (n=0), students are looking at 1 person, themselves, but as they go up the ladder they are referring to their 2 parent, 4 grandparents, 8 great grandparents, 16 great-great grandparents, 32 great-great-great grandparents, etc. Subsequently they can use these numbers to more accurately understand/describe their ancestry.

4) Student Activities
Student Activities will include researching personal genealogy, conducting and interview with living ancestors about their views on civics and the views of past generations, creating a Civics Family Tree, and writing a Personal Civics Reflection.

5) Planning Methodology
We all decided that Family History / Genealogy / “Origins” would be an interesting way to tie all of our subjects together. I have always enjoyed making connections from one topic or subject to another and saw genealogy as an important subject because it describes where we come from. For students to better understand themselves it is important for them to know what makes them unique. At the same time, the fact that we are all so different is perhaps what we have most in come, and hopefully this is a larger message for students to absorb.

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