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Russian Culture, Immigration

Produced by Helen Linda Phillips, Lorne Elementary Magnet, 1996

This is a 5 day thematic lesson plan with lessons being taught in Social Studies, Language Arts, and Art in a fifth grade self-contained classroom. Students will show an understanding of Russian Culture by comparing aspects of it to our culture here in the United States. Students will be able to discuss and compare Molly's Pilgrim, to what we perceive as a pilgrim. Students will be able to answer questions about issues such as school uniforms and comparing folktales.

Social Studies

Day 1: Read aloud to the class Molly's Pilgrim. Discuss: What is a Pilgrim? Why do people leave their countries to come to the United States? How could you help Molly adjust to the United States? How would you feel if you were Molly?

Day 2: Show video, Molly's Pilgrim. Have class read chapter 1, Social Studies, on immigration silently. Discuss. Brainstorm questions for interviewing an immigrant. Chart questions on the board. Discuss how to interview someone. Students will find a willing immigrant to interview, can be a classmate or another person on campus, or a personal friend or relative. Interviews can be done by note-taking or tape recorder as long as the person being interviewed gives their approval.

Language Arts

Day 3: Read folktale, The Magic Mill. Discuss: What kind of moral lesson can be learned from this story? What other tales have you heard that remind you of this one? List as many magical objects, such as the mill, as you can. Compare and contrast the ways in which the magic works.

Day 4: Discussion of school uniforms: What is our school policy? Is it mandatory? Read What Shall I Wear To School Today. What was the uniform policy in the former Soviet Union? Which policy do you feel is fair? Why?

Discussion of outside school activities. Read article, "Join the Club," answer questions on corresponding worksheet.


Day 5: Make shadow puppets to retell a folk tale of their choice.

Center for European and Eurasian Studies