Since we were visiting The Franklin Institute as part of our unit
on electricity, I wanted to let my students obtain some background information
on Ben. Students went on the Internet and The Franklin Institute's
web page to locate information about him. They also took out books from
the school library to find facts about Ben. In their investigations, they
found timelines on his life. Some chose to write about his inventions,
while others were more interested in his personal or political life.
Together, we gathered an abundant amount of information on Ben's
life. Some students began a study of the colonial period in
which he lived. This led some students into researching how people lived
during this period in time and who had an effect
on the life of Ben Franklin. Students gathered their information
and put it all together by either writing reports, making timelines,
posters, or performing skits. This was a good means of assessment, and
it was great watching my students being so actively involved in learning
about the life and accomplishments of Ben Franklin. We took
advantage of our classroom computers and even went to the computer lab
to type our reports. This helped students with their word processing
skills. Take a look at the word search that you can
use with your students and the list of Ben's inventions.
By visiting The Franklin Institute, students were able to connect
a lot of the concepts learned in their research about Ben Franklin
to the many exhibits in the museum. This was a valuable learning
experience. It was fun, too!
In June, we will be taking a private trolley tour of Colonial Philadelphia.
At this time we will visit all of the sights that played a part in Franklin's
life or were named after him (ex. The Franklin Institute, Ben Franklin
Bridge, B.F. Parkway, Independence Hall, the place where the Declaration
of Independence was signed, just to name a few.)