- Grade level: Middle/Upper Elementary, High School
- Subject Area: Social Studies
Students begin their investigations of community organizations by creating brief profiles of local agencies. Students gather information about various community organizations and present their findings to the class.
- Learn about various organizations in their community.
- Gain experience in making professional contacts with organizations.
Materials and Resources
In developing our lessons and activities, we made some assumptions about the hardware and software that would be available in the classroom for teachers who visit the LETSNet Website. We assume that teachers using our Internet-based lessons or activities have a computer (PC or Macintosh) with the necessary hardware components (mouse, keyboard, and monitor) as well as software (operating system, TCP/IP software, networking or dial-up software, e-mail and a World Wide Web client program, preferably Netscape, but perhaps Mosaic or Lynx). In the section below, we specify any "special" hardware or software requirements for a lesson or activity (in addition to those described above) and the level of Internet access required to do the activity.
- Special hardware requirements: None.
- Special software requirements: None.
- Internet access: None for this lesson.
- Have students create a profile of one community service organization for a homework project. Students may conduct phone interviews or set up appointments to visit the agency in person. Students should take written notes of their converstations and obtain copies of any written materials the agency might have such as mission statements and brochures. Each student should prepare a brief report that conveys the mission of the organization and how the organization works to achieve its goals. Some examples of organizations that students may profile are municipal police, fire, sanitation, and parks and recreation departments, local charities, and social service organizations such as food pantries, homeless shelters, and blood banks. For this project, students should focus only on non-profit organizations.
- Students share their reports over the course of one or two class periods, so that all members of the class hear about a wide array of organizations and functions. Have the class discuss the ways these agencies shape what happens in their community.
- Assign students to task forces and have them select an organization to profile. Groups might have to negotiate if two or more groups would like to profile the same organization.
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