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Old 05-15-2007, 09:13 PM
RSMY's Avatar
RSMY RSMY is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 84
3rd Grade Teacher
Thematic unit for the Gold Rush

Hi Everyone,

I'm a student teacher who needs to teach and create a Thematic Unit. Any ideas or suggestions of how I can apporach.

Old 05-15-2007, 09:57 PM
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hipteachergirl hipteachergirl is offline
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 114
4th Grade Teacher
Question: How long do you have until this needs to be created? You can do it really quickly and not very thoroughly or it can take a while and be amazing.
Old 05-15-2007, 10:22 PM
RSMY's Avatar
RSMY RSMY is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 84
3rd Grade Teacher
Well, I need it quickly and it needs to be a 10 day thematic lesson. Thanks for any help you can give me.
Old 05-16-2007, 06:15 PM
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Jenny G Jenny G is offline
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 234
One of the things I did to start the gold rush was to hide gold-covered chocolate coins in the yard outside my room. Then I told one student at recess that there was a prize outside the door and after they discovered what was there, they could tell another student or keep all of them for themselves. It usually caused quite a "gold rush" of its own! It was a great way to show how things snowballed and how the word spread.
Old 05-16-2007, 08:27 PM
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Tasha Tasha is offline
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 4,393
Kindergarten Teacher
Break it into subjects and brainstorm how you can relate information to that subject.
Math - distances travelled, amount of money made, price per weight/size
Social studies - timeline, where people travelled from, what happened to the families they left
Science - how does gold form,
LA - make brochures to encourage people to move, write letters to family back home from the perspective of someone who followed the gold rush
If all else fails, find a lot of good trade books and develop ideas from there.
Children of the Gold Rush by Claire Rudolf Murphy and Jane G. Haigh
The Bite of the Gold Bug: A Story of the Alaskan Gold Rush by Barthe DeClements and Dan Andreasen
Old 05-21-2007, 08:32 PM
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deb4kids deb4kids is offline
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 41
Upper Elementary Teacher
For resources, try:

I like to do a literature unit based on the ethnic groups that traveled to CA. I use books like Coolies, Hurry Freedom, etc (there are lots to choose from). I also use as a read aloud By The Great Horn Spoon. It is a great read, really funny, and the kids love it.

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