Recreational Users and Dams

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SWBAT identify the reasons why recreational users benefit from dams.

Big Idea

Dams create reservoirs which provide a safe, controlled environment for recreational users.


10 minutes

To begin the lesson, I ask students to define recreation. I define recreation as an activity done for enjoyment during ones leisure time. I then ask students to think of activities that they like to do for fun. I create a class list of activities on the classroom whiteboard. The listing of recreational activities that are enjoyed by students helps my students to make a personal connection to their learning. I then ask students to think of ways that we could sort the list of activities. This helps students work on the skill of classifying. I inform my students that in this lesson, they will be studying outdoor recreational activities that take place on or around dams.  

A photo of my class' list of recreational activities they enjoy can be found here.

Guided Practice

10 minutes

I distribute a copy of the recreational users research packet to each student and ask them to take out their partially completed note taking graphic organizer that they worked on when we studied salmon and dams. I inform my students that in this lesson, they will be reading about how recreational users feel about dams. The recreational user serves as the second stakeholder perspective that students will examine as they prepare their opinion paper. 

I guide students as they read the first two articles in the packet. I draw popsicle sticks with student names to select students to help read the articles aloud. After each paragraph, I ask the students to pause, consider what they have read, and highlight key information. After completing an article, I ask students to add their notes to the note-taking graphic organizer. 

Independent Practice

20 minutes

After reading the first two articles, I provide the students with time to read the final article on their own. I ask students to highlight and take notes as they read. Allowing students to practice these skills independently helps students build confidence and develop work habits that will serve them well in the future. 

While students are working on this task, I circulate around the room to ensure that my students are on task and they are able to successfully complete the note-taking process. This serves as an informal skills assessment for me.

A video of a student sharing his notes can be found here. A photo example of one student's notes can be found here