Thursday, January 29, 2009

Where's Gilligan?

Remember Gilligan's Island? Most of our students today don't have any idea who Gilligan is. Introduce this lesson with this YouTube video. Talk about Gilligan and all the predicaments he managed to get himself and his crew in! In this lesson plan, Gilligan has been rescued from the island. He has dedicated his life to searching islands around the world in search of other castaways. Students will use Google Earth to follow Gilligan on his journey to various islands.
Ask students what islands they know about. They may not realize that Manhattan is actually an island. Just what is Ellis Island? Where is Madacasgar? These might be islands that are currently in the news or in their literature (Misty of Chiconteague, Islands of the Blue Dolphins). Find islands with strange names, such as Easter Island and Christmas Island. Are there others named after holidays? Generate a list of islands. Search for islands in wikipedia and you'll find islands in particular geographic areas. If your area of study is the United States, then generate a list of islands in the United States only.
After marking these islands on Google Earth, students choose one island to research. The gathered information can be presented in Keynote. Wouldn't it be an added bonus if students could communicate with a class on the island they chose? With ePals it just might be possible!

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