Something Old…Something New

For generations, we have used the concept of pen pals to expand cultural awareness. My goal is to include digital literacy as part of the experience by using the tool in a safe manner.

Outline of lesson:

Objective: to expand cultural awareness by directly engaging peers.

Grade: 4

Unit of Study: State

Activity 1: Students will brainstorm daily life in regions of Alaska. Assumptions will be recorded in whole class discussion. Students will be encouraged to group based on their interest in geographical regions.

Activity 2: Students will conduct internet research to prove or disprove assumptions based on their selected geographic region.

Activity 3: Students will compile a list of 20 questions to ask their cohorts. Questions shall be generated by the teams

Activity 4: virtual pen pal through Skype. Ask questions and record results as well as answer questions from their pen pal group.

Activity 5: Compile a Virtual field trip highlighting what they want their pen pal group to know about them. Use any multi media application to build the presentation.


The tasks require the student to engage using technology as a tool. The teacher as coach provides direction around proper citation of sources as well as appropriate information to share in the virtual field trip.

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