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Lesson Plan 1 – Mapping Walls


Computers & Internet, Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies  



Title – Walls That Tell a Story Unit – Lesson I – Mapping Walls (Math)
By – Donna Hennessy
Primary Subject – Language Arts
Secondary Subjects – Math, Science, Social Studies, Language Arts, Computers/Internet
Grade Level – 5

Walls That Tell a Story Unit

I. Table of Contents

II. Curriculum Web of Activities

III. Narrative Rationale

IV. Timeline for Implementation of Lessons

V. Unit Materials and Resources

VI. Lesson Plans: Lesson Plan 1 – Mapping Walls – (Math, Social Studies)

      Lesson Plan 2 –

Building the Biggest Walls

      Lesson Plan 3 –

Virtual Exploration of Lascaux Cave

      Lesson Plan 4 –

Breaking Down Walls

    (Language Arts, Other)

VII. Unit Comprehensive Assessment

VIII. Culminating Activity-Field Trip

Walls That Tell a Story

VI. Lesson Plan #1

Mapping “Walls”

Lesson Rationale & Context:

      Students have read the book

Talking Walls

    and have created a huge world map so that we could map where these walls exist. In this lesson, children will examine the location of the various walls, estimate the number of miles away the wall is (from our school) and figure out how many miles they would have to travel to get to these walls.

Learning Objectives:

  1. SWBAT identify pictures of the walls we discussed in the book Talking Walls .
  2. SWBAT locate where the wall goes on a map.
  3. SWBAT calculate the number of miles it would take to get there using the map and a ruler.

New Jersey Core Curriculum Content Standards:

      4.2.5.D.2 – Math – Units of Measure

      • Convert measurement units within a system.

    4.1.5.C. – Math – Estimation

    • Use a variety of estimation strategies for both number and computation.


      For Students:

      • Miniature cutout pictures of the walls
      • Rulers (1 per child)
      • Giant Map (on floor)
      • Calculators (1 per group of 4)
      • Pencil (1 per child)

    For Teachers

    • Book Talking Walls
    • Tackey


      Anticipatory Set:

        1. Start with this Knock Knock Joke:

          Knock Knock.
          Who’s there?
          Andrew who? Andrew all over the wall.

        2. Then say:

          “Today we are going to estimate and then calculate the distance we’d need to travel to get to the various walls described in the book Talking Walls and chart the information on the giant map we made in our classroom.”

      Main Activity:


        1. Using the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall in Washington, DC, the teacher will demonstrate the activity.
        2. Teacher will decide where on the map this wall should go, take the small picture of it, and place it on the map.
        3. The teacher will model some estimation skills aloud to the class. “I know that it takes me about 5 hours to drive there by car. I usually drive about 65 miles per hour, so I would estimate that it’s about 325 miles away from our school.”
        4. Using a ruler, the teacher would then measure the distance from our school to the Vietnam Memorial Wall using a ruler. The teacher will calculate the number of inches and then convert this number into miles to see how close she was in her estimation. She will then write that number on the picture on the map.

        Guided Practice:

        1. Teacher then asks them to think about the next wall, The Canadian Museum of Civilization. Children should think about a way then can make an estimation of how far this wall is from our school and be ready to support their estimates by revealing their thinking aloud.
        2. The teacher will give the students several minutes to think about this, and then ask for a volunteer to discuss their estimation.
        3. Once an estimate is made by about three different students, students will work with the teacher to measure and calculate the actual number for miles, using the ruler.

        Independent Practice:

        1. Children will then go back to their groups and work with other group members to estimate and map three different walls (each group will be given different walls).


      1. The teacher will ask each group to stand up one at a time to present the walls they mapped and their distances from our school.


  • The next day, the teacher will give each child a smaller individual map, along with the pictures of the walls and the modes of transportation. Children will be asked to map four of their favorite walls and calculate the miles. This will be checked and graded and put in their portfolio for Parent/Teacher conferences.


  • Children who have difficulty with math concepts will be paired with a child having strong skills and that could serve as a mentor to the child.
  • For ESL students, since we will be using pictures of the walls, and not just the names of the walls, this may be a little easier for them to comprehend.

Narrative of Pitfalls, Solutions & Reflections:

  • The teacher may need to go over the rules of working in groups prior to starting this lesson. This depends on the students’ past learning experiences. Some of them may be accustomed to working in groups while others may not have.

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