Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Who Is George Washington Carver, Anyway?

Eva Abrams
Bay District Schools

Description

-Who is George Washington Carver, Anyway?- enables students to learn about an African-American scientist who made significant contributions in science since 1880.

Objectives

The student drafts and revises simple sentences and passages, stories, letters, and simple explanations that-express ideas clearly-show an awareness of topic and audience-have a beginning, middle, and ending-effectively use common words-have supporting detail; and-are in legible printing.

The student knows significant individuals in United States history since 1880 (e.g., presidents, scientists and inventors, significant women, and people who have worked to achieve equality and improve individual lives).

Materials

-Mitchell, Barbara, A Pocketful of Goobers: A Story About George Washington Carver> . Corolrhoda Books, 1989.
-Benitez, Miena. George Washington Carver: Plant Doctor , Raintree/Steck-Vaughn, 1996.
-Raw and roasted peanuts in the shell
-Jar of peanut butter and crackers
-Materials (copy paper with a construction paper cover) for one blank peanut booklet per group. (Directions can be found in the Teacher Preparation section of this lesson.)
-Software encyclopedia such as Microsoft Encarta, etc.(also web link)
-Internet link to conduct research (see Weblink below)
-Computers

Preparations

1. Buy raw and roasted peanuts in shell, jar of peanut butter, crackers, and plasticware to spread the peanut butter.
2. Get books on George Washington Carver from your school library or the public library.
3. Make sample booklets as a model for students.
4. Make booklets for each group. Staple 2 - 3 folded 8 1/2 x 11 inch copy paper and construction paper cover together book-style. Cut in the shape of a peanut. Students can cut them into a peanut shape as part of their group work.
5. Bookmark web links and set up encyclopedia software to the proper place if students will be using them for research.

Procedures

1. Hold up raw peanuts in one hand and roasted peanuts in the other hand. The teacher will ask students if anyone knows what these things are. After a student answers that they are peanuts, ask if someone can name the man who developed over 300 uses for the peanut.

2. Tell students you are going to read them a story about the man who developed over 300 uses for the peanut.

3. Read APocketful of Goobers/ A Story About George Washington Carver by Barbara Mitchell. Explain any vocabulary students may not know as you are reading the story.

4. Ask students questions about Carver's childhood, education, teaching, and accomplishments at Tuskegee. Record and organize this information on a web so students can refer to it when they write.

5. Students work in small groups to design, write, and illustrate a booklet about George Washington Carver and his many accomplishments. Examples would include inventions made out of peanuts, like soap, etc. Students may want to design their booklet in the shape of a peanut. Students can use George Washington Carver: Plant Doctor- by Miena Benitz as an additional resource and any other appropriate books you can find about his life. Likewise, students may use an encyclopedia on CD and/or the Internet to conduct further research about George Washington Carver for their booklet with teacher supervision (URL is listed later in this lesson).

6. Students share their booklets with the class by reading them aloud over the next several days.

7. Share creackers and peanut butter. Tell students they can sample one of the many contributions Mr. Carver has made to our lives.

Assessments

1. Ask questions to determine if students identify George Washington Carver as a significant individual in US history since 1880 as both a scientist and inventor.
2. Assess the booklets made by the students to see if they recognized George Washington Carver as a significant individual in US history since 1880 as both a scientist and inventor.
3. Assess if the simple explanations written in the booklet express ideas clearly, show an awareness of topic and audience, effectively use common words, and are in legible writing.

Extensions

This lesson could be part of a unit about inventors or used during Black History month.

Web Links

Web supplement for Who is George Washington Carver, Anyway?
George Washington Carver

Web supplement for Who is George Washington Carver, Anyway?
Encyclopedia Brittannica

Web supplement for Who is George Washington Carver, Anyway?
Encarta

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