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Mr. Custer's 5th - 6th Grade Education Site

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Europe Unit Overview

Welcome Teachers!

For Teachers:
This unit is the continually evolving product of my unit "The world and World War 2".  It involves students in researching and then creating and sharing a multimedia presentation with the class.  Each year, I revisit this unit and modify it.  One of my fellow Social Studies teachers also tried this project and similar others last year and was very pleased.   The results were astounding!  Our students loved the work, and their products went way beyond what we expected.  After my students completed the unit 4 years ago, I gave them a survey so that I could have their input for unit revisions for coming years.  Their comments were overwhelmingly positive. 

Special Education

You are probably saying to yourself, "This wouldn't work with special education students."   I have had as many as 24 mainstreamed special needs students with a variety of physical disabilities, learning disabilities, and emotional disorders.  In my school, all special education students (except severe/profound and the behavioral unit) students attend regular education Science and Social Studies classes.  I was skeptical of how I could make this work, until I tried it.  Many people still question my sanity when I first tell them that my special needs students are able to do this unit with only limited modifications, but the technology really does make things easier for them.


Let's say you have a student that is learning disabled and has difficulty with reading.  No problem.  I allow my students to work in small groups or pairs as long as they understand that each person will be held individually accountable for his/her knowledge of the topic and part of the visual presentation.  That way, there is someone to read the information and assist the student, yet he/she is ultimately responsible for his/her own learning.  I also allow students to choose their own partners as long as the group demonstrates adequate progress.  So far, this has worked extremely well.  I've even had special needs students voluntarily stay after school for 2 hours or more in order to work on their research and presentations.  This required me to occasionally stay after school for quite some time in order to keep the lab or classroom open, but the end results were worth every minute of my time.  You may need to make other adjustments for students with physical impairments, but they will most likely be minimal.

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