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6th Grade History Instructional Unit Capstone Project

Pages:8 (2360 words)



Topic:Teaching Strategies

Document Type:Capstone Project


Instructional Unit

Classrooms have traditionally been the stage for social change as they provide avenues for promoting and accelerating new ideas. As part of promoting and accelerating new ideas, teachers help students to develop critical thinking, self-reflection and collaboration skills that are essential to promote the creation of a better society (Blake, 2020). Therefore, diversity and social justice are important to social work and related curricular content. Accreditation standards including Common Core Standards mandate curricular content for teaching diversity and social justice. When developing instructional strategies for their classes, teachers need to integrate diversity and social justice components with respect to mandated curricular content. This instructional 3-week unit for 6th grade history class leverages a contemporary educational theme in diversity and social justice.

Unit Background and Contemporary Educational Theme

As they continue to progress in their learning, sixth grade students are generally ready to enhance their understanding of history. The study of history helps them to deepen their understanding and view of the Earth and its populations. In addition to history, these students enhance their understanding of the world through learning politics, social systems, culture, geography and economic systems. Therefore, the recommended context for diversity, social justice and social systems in sixth grade is world history. Through this, these students explore the place, spatial organization, and location of some of the major regions in the world. Sixth grade students are given the opportunity to study some ancient civilizations. This instructional unit seeks to provide social studies instruction as a component of world history in relation to district instructional goals and common core standards.

The relevant contemporary educational theme in diversity and social justice that will be incorporated in this unit is inclusivity. Inclusivity is a relevant theme in this instructional unit because it focuses on teaching towards African American/minority community and social justice standards. Rules that promote fairness and establishment of inclusivity in the classroom will be established and used to guide teaching and learning. Additionally, students are expected to make connections between history and the modern society as a means of deepening their understanding of inclusivity. By the end of the 3-week instructional unit, students will enhance their knowledge of grade-appropriate concepts, knowledge, and skills on social studies.

Discipline of Study

Given the focus of the instructional unit, the discipline of study is 6th grade World History, Geography and Ancient Civilization. This is an important discipline of study since a deeper understanding of historical issues helps to develop a deeper understanding of social justice standards and issues facing African American/minority community. In this regard, students will make connections on the role and impact of ancient civilizations on the development and growth of African American/minority community. These connections help to create a suitable foundation for development and understanding social studies and social justice standards among students. Grade-level social studies content incorporates Connecting Concepts, which is a term referring to linking information between various people, events, places, and time periods (edCount, 2014). Teachers needs to understand these concepts and structure their lessons in a manner that enhances students’ understanding of the issues. Through proper curriculum and lesson structure, educators enable students to make connections between the concepts and new information. This in turn supports comprehension of the knowledge, concepts, and skills as well as generalization and transference.

For this instructional 3-week unit, the educator will focus on Connecting Concepts that are relevant and specific to the module. The instructional unit connects content across the units in the module based on common standards relating to the subject. Over the 3-week period, the educator will explore different subjects including History (ancient history), Egyptian civilization Mesopotamian, and Egyptian history. These subjects will provide the premise for connecting concepts on social justice standards, geography, and history.

Types of Students

The unit is targeting 6th grade students from diverse ethnic, racial and national backgrounds because of the changing nature of the modern learning environment. Students in this classroom are from different racial/ethnic backgrounds,…

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…10 minutes warm-up activity at the beginning of each lesson. The warm-up activity will focus on examining what students already know about the topic in relation to the previous one. Warm-up activities are essential to help students get ready for the lesson and examine prior knowledge on the subject area. Apart from warm-up activities at the beginning of each lesson, review of the short essays completed by the students will also help in discussion of prior knowledge. Since these lessons build upon each other, reviewing students essays or homework will play an important role in assessing and discussing prior knowledge on the topic.

Through assessment of prior knowledge, teachers identify areas where students require help for improved understanding and mastery of learning concept. Moreover, it helps to shape teaching strategies employed by the teacher to enhance students’ learning. Discussion of prior knowledge also helps to reinforce what was learned in the previous class or what the student already knows regarding the topic.

Teaching Strategies

6th grade students in the classroom are not only from different racial/ethnic backgrounds, but also have different learning needs and abilities. As a result, different teaching strategies that support student achievement/differentiation of stated outcomes and engaging activities to prepare students for the assessments designed for the unit will be employed. One of these strategies is lecture, which will involve the use of textbooks and graphic organizers like PowerPoint presentation. Secondly, students will participate in small group discussions through which learning will be reinforced in the classroom. The other teaching strategies include incorporating technological tools, use of visuals like maps, and whole class discussions. The use of the different teaching strategies will help meet students’ learning needs and capabilities while enhancing their participation in the classroom.

In conclusion, developing an instructional plan for a specific grade level and discipline of study is essential in shaping the teaching and learning process. As shown in this instructional unit, the plan requires identifying specific lessons and related subject areas. These subject…

Sample Source(s) Used


Archdiocese of Santa Fe. (2011). Social Studies Curriculum. Retrieved April 27, 2020, from

This publication provides an overview of world history and geography as part of social studies curriculum for 6th grade students. It provides an outline of learning outcomes and assessments/strategies that can be employed in a 6th grade history class. These strategies, assessments, and learning outcomes are developed in line with common standards and based on what students at this grade level should achieve by the end of the unit. It was utilized to determine suitable strategies, assessments and learning outcomes to incorporate for the success of this unit.

Blake, C. (2020). Teaching Social Justice in Theory and Practice. Retrieved April 27, 2020, from

This article examines the process of teaching social justice in relation to existing theory and best practices. The author examines how classrooms are designed to be avenues for social change by promoting learning of new ideas. This article was used to identify a contemporary educational theme in diversity and social justice. The identified theme was utilized to shape the unit content and teaching strategies.

California Department of Education. (2000). History – Social Science Content Standards for California Public Schools: Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve. Retrieved from California Department of Education website:

The publication provides an overview of standards relating to the study of history and social science from kindergarten to grade twelve. Standards are used as the premise for shaping learning content, expectations, and outcomes for students in different grades. Insights from this publication was used to shape learning content, expectation, outcomes, and strategies for this instructional unit.

edCount. (2014). World History and Geography: Mesopotamia, Ancient Egypt, and Ancient Israel. Retrieved from Tennessee State Government website:

The article examines grade 6 topic on world history and geography in relation to common standards. The author reviews different subject areas relating to this topic including ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia and ancient Israel. Through this review, the publication seeks to enhance knowledge of grade-appropriate social studies concepts, skills, and knowledge. The publication was used to identify relevant knowledge, skills and social studies concepts relating to this instructional unit.

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