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Big 6+ Inquiry GLEs for 6th-12th Grade: 11th Grade GLE (C6 The Modern World) 3rd/4th Qtr

Lesson Overview

This project is to be completed during 3rd/4th quarter.

The goal of this inquiry project is for students to explore if modern conveniences make us more or less connected/alienated.  Students will present their findings as an argument essay.

Proficiency Scales in Lesson Overview

To help prepare students for this GLE, the classroom teacher can use the student Performance Assessment workbook Unit 1 Argumentative essay materials.  These steps use articles related to eye on technology.


This is a collaborative lesson taught by both the classroom teacher and the school librarian. Get in contact with your school librarian early to discuss scheduling and teaching responsibilities.

This lesson plan is a guideline. If you need to make minor adjustments or changes to best suit the needs of your students or the resources in your building, please do so. If you have questions about the curricular requirements, please contact Shelley Erickson or Julie Schik.

At the completion of this lesson, you will need to send two student examples each of a level 2, 3, and 4 project to your curriculum specialist or department head who will in turn submit them to your supervisor.  This can be electronically or as a hard copy.

Task Definition (1)

Teacher—be sure to complete this before going to library/lab:

Students will read “Winter Dreams” and other texts in the collection.  Students will decide if modern conveniences keep us more or less connected/alienated and present an argument about their claim.

Teacher will introduce the requirements for the project.  (See Synthesis & Sharing)

Collection Six focuses in part on the transformation of America into a modern society in which people strive for wealth, power, or immortality. As you consider what it means to be a modern person in our society, look back at the anchor text, “Winter Dreams,” to support Perspective One.

Think about the following questions

  • What does it mean to be modern?
  • What challenges of modern society are presented in the texts?
  • What opportunities of modern society are presented in the texts?


Perspective One

Perspective Two

Perspective Three

The realizations of the American Dream and its pursuit continues to evolve in modern times. A person can use upward mobility to improve their social and economic status to achieve happiness.  However, the pursuit of the American dream can often lead to disillusionment.

A modern person integrates technology into their daily life, which creates a sense of interconnectedness and promotes globalization. However, social and political institutions can use the reliance on technology to isolate people and control information in the modern world.

A modern person develops their own goals, desires, and opportunities in their pursuit of happiness. The value placed on individualism allows people to become self-reliant.  However, societal pressures and social influences may lead to conformity and a loss of individualism.

Anchor Text:

“Winter Dreams”

Pages 413-433




Formative Assessment: Verify all information is recorded on student handouts (can be a visual check or graded assessment)

Info Seeking/Location & Access (2/3)

With direct instruction from the school librarian (with support from the classroom teacher) on search strategies and recommended resources, students will locate information about their topic.  Conduct independent research to find at least two additional sources: one source for Perspective Two, and one source for Perspective Three (see Task Definition above).:

Possible Sources of information:

  • Gale Student Resources in Context
  • Gale Opposing Viewpoints in Context
  • Encyclopedia Britannica Online
  • Some sources should be student selected

Formative Assessment:  Consistent and frequent verbal and visual checks with student to assess if they are able to access quality resources.

Your librarian will use your school's direct links to the district databases when working with students.

Use of Information (4)

Teacher will guide students through transferring information into a notes organizer. Teacher’s Edition recommends students use a graphic organizer and an outline with suggestions on what to include in Build Your Argument, Develop Counterclaims, and Get Organized on pg. 602.

With direct instruction and support from the school librarian, students will create citations for their sources.  Recommendation to use district subscription to Noodle Tools.  If using Gale Student Resources in Context or Encyclopedia Britannica, citations are provided in the database.  Teacher will provide instruction on internal citations.

Formative Assessment:  Visual checks for completion.  And/or, individual conferencing with students to determine if ready to move on to synthesis and sharing.

Synthesis & Sharing (5)

Teacher will review the requirements for the final project and assist students as necessary.

Required:  Write an argument that persuades readers to agree with your claim about what it means to be a modern person based on the challenges and opportunities in American society.

  • Analyze and evaluate the perspectives given
  • State and develop your own perspective/position on the issue
  • Explain the relationship between your perspective and those given
  • Anticipate opposing claims and offer well-supported counterclaims
  • Establish clear, logical connections among claims, counterclaims, reasons, and evidence
  • Include an introduction with a thesis, a logically structured body, and a conclusion
  • Maintain an appropriate tone based on audience, context, and content

Your perspective may be in full agreement with any of the others, in partial agreement, or wholly different. Whatever the case, fully support your ideas with logical reasoning and detailed, persuasive examples.

Formative Assessment: Rough draft feedback.

Summative Assessment: Use the provided proficiency scale.

Self-Evaluation (6)

Teacher will guide students as they complete the self-evaluation form containing teacher selected items from the form included on the libguide.

OR use the questions in the Reflect on the Process section of the Teacher’s Edition on the left side of pg. 604.

The self-evaluation can be as brief (one question) or as long as the teacher deems necessary.  This can be a graded or non-graded activity.         

Citation Resources

Noodle Tools

Noodletools provides a format for creating research papers.  It provides an area for notetaking, citation creation, and paper formation.

Guides for using Noodle Tools

This 20 minute video gives an overview on how to use NoodleTools.

This video shows how to create a new project.

This video shows how to check the format of your citation.

This video shows how to add a preformatted citation from a database or website.

Omaha Public Schools does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, age, genetic information, citizenship status, or economic status in its programs, activities and employment and provides equal access to the Boy Scouts and other designated youth groups. The following individual has been designated to address inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Superintendent of Schools, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (402-557-2001).

Las Escuelas Públicas de Omaha no discriminan basados en la raza, color, origen nacional, religión, sexo, estado civil, orientación sexual, discapacidad , edad, información genética, estado de ciudadanía, o estado económico, en sus programas, actividades y empleo, y provee acceso equitativo a los “Boy Scouts” y a otros grupos juveniles designados. La siguiente persona ha sido designada para atender estas inquietudes referentes a las pólizas de no discriminación: El Superintendente de las Escuelas, 3215 Cuming Street, Omaha, NE 68131 (402-557-2001).