Technology Impact in Education Month

To stay up to date with all the news from the field of "technological development", be sure to follow and absorb available information or check points to pump up your knowledge.

 3 to 5 Grade Lessons

(Teachers are encouraged to adapt lesson plans based on grade level of students and State Curriculum Standards.)

Subject: Language Arts/Social Studies/Technology

Suggested Time: Two Class Periods (50 minutes)


The students will be able to:

  1. Identify influential modern technological advances.
  2. Describe the impact of modern technological inventions on your daily life.
  3. Write a Persuasive letter emphasizing the importance of technology within their daily lives.
  1. Paper, Pens or pencils
  2. Access to Computers with Internet Access
  3. Index Cards
  4. White Board
Teachers may evaluate student participation, writing skills, ability to use content vocabulary, mechanics of letter writing, ability to complete a persuasive argument.

Content Vocabulary
Broadband, CD burner, chat, computer, distance learning, download, filter, firewall, IM, laptop computer, listserv, Mp3 player, online text books, PDA, scanner, weblog, wireless,VCR, camcorders, digital recorder, video games, DSL, broadband, instant messaging, DVD, cell phone, personal computers, internet, handhelds, laptops, scanners, GPS, e-mail, spell check

Language Arts Vocabulary
persuade, convince, sway, argue, emphasize, encourage, advocate, influence, opinion, heading, greeting, body, closing, signature

Classroom Activities
Teachers may choose to complete all or some of these exercises or use these exercises as a starting point for their own creative approach.

Introduction (10 minutes)

  1. Teacher shares his/her favorite piece of modern technology with the class (any technological invention post 1970 (i.e. e-mail, PDA,VCR, camcorders, video games, DSL, broadband, instant messaging, DVD’s, cell phones, personal computers, internet, handhelds, laptops, scanners, GPS, e-mail, spell check) and explain why this modern technology is valued. Next each student will write the name of their favorite modern technology on an index card and on the back of the card the student will write at least one reason this modern technology is important to them. The teacher will then collect the cards and create cooperative groups of 4-5 students based on the various responses. In the small groups the students will share their index card with the small group identifying the modern technology most important to them and explain the importance of this particular technology. The small groups will then shares one example of an essential modern technology with the entire class with at least two examples of why this technology is essential. As the groups share the modern technologies the teacher will track the discussion with a graphic organizer.
  2. Teacher simulates a whole group discussion regarding the influence of modern technologies on daily life.
Possible Discussion Questions:
  1. Which modern technologies are used most often during the school day?
  2. How would you define technology?
  3. Imagine what your school life or your personal life might be like without modern technologies.
  4. Explain how you will use technology in your future career.
  5. How does technology make your life better?
  6. What would class be like without modern technology?
  7. Explain why modern technologies are important to your success in school.
  8. Which modern technologies do you use outside of school?
  9. How would your life change without modern technologies?
  10. How might school change without modern technologies?
  11. Imagine a Technology Blackout Day: One Day without any modern technologies. How would you feel? What would be different?
  12. Compare and contrast a school day with technology and without technology.

Hints for the Teacher:
The following writing lesson is based on a persuasive letter to your local US Representative or US Senator. Please visit Congress Merge to locate the contact information for your state’s Congressman.

**You are strongly encouraged to create a writing prompt based on your state standards and standardized test format.

Following the 5-Step Writing Process of modeling, drafting, revising, editing and publishing the teacher will model and the students will write a letter to their U.S. Representative or US Senator . The letter will detail the importance of technology in the modern day classroom, using vocabulary from the classes brainstorming activity. Once the student’s work has been edited students are encouraged to submit their letters or their paragraph outcomes  to .

**Teachers and students may choose to contact their Representative or Senator via US Postal service, fax or e-mail. Technology Impact in Education Month encourages electronic communication via e-mail, fax or e-fax. In order to be eligible for  Technology Impact in Education Monthstudents must submit their final product on-line

Homework & Participation in Technology Impact in Education MonthActivities:

  1. Submit your student results by January 31, 2006. A student can choose to answer one or all of the questions - We do ask for their definition of technology and only one of the following questions to be submitted per person to be counted toward prizes.
    1. Student Question I: Describe the technology tools you use in your school.
    2. Student Question II: How do technology tools impact your education?
    Send an email or letter to your Congressional leaders and the White House expressing your students' results. (This step is optional in terms of prize eligibility, but it is very important to share your students’ support of enhancing teaching and learning through technology. Please see Send A Message for the easy step-by-step instructions. 3. Encourage your parents to complete the parent’s homework too!
Extension Activities:
  1. Perform a Skit Portraying a School Day without Technology
  2. Create an Advertising Campaign emphasizing the need for technology in the classroom.
  3. Invite the local PTA, school board president, school superintendent, and governor, US Representative or US Senator to visit your classroom/school to see technology in action within the school setting.
Literature/Research Sources
As a class, read and discuss a current event article about technology in schools. We suggest any one of these as a starting point with suggested discussion questions.


Schools tackle PDA problem - September 21, 2003.

Teens Want Cell Phones and Laptops for Back to School - September 3, 2003.

'Star Wars Kid' school video raises web privacy issues - September 23, 2003

RIAA settles with 12-year-old girl - September 10, 2003

Bleeps and Blips to Rocket Ships: Great Inventions in Communications ISBN: 0760746427 Barnes & Noble Books 2003 (Ages 8-12)

Additional Sample Lesson Plans for Teacher Reference and Extension Activities:

Related Language Arts Lesson Plans:
A Genre Study of Letters with The Jolly Postman

Letter Generator In this student interactive from ReadWriteThink, students learn how to write a friendly-style and a business-style letter.

Student Handout - Make A Point! Can You Convince Me?: Developing Persuasive Fiction." Grade 3-5

Related Technology Lesson Plans

All About Computers (K-5)

Technology: Past, Present, and Future (Grades 3-5)
To broaden students’ awareness of technology by examining inventions of the past and present and by learning Technology: Past, Present, and Future (Grades how inventions inspire and lead to the development of other inventions.

Computerized Civilization:
Computers have now become so entrenched in our present culture that they're even being used to study long-lost cultures of the past. Next, an experiment in virtual archaeology.

The prototype for the World Wide Web was created in 1990.

Generation Tech
Capturing Today's Technology in a Virtual Time Capsule.

KIDS ON-Line: Sample lesson plans on how to use various technologies.

Related Social Studies Lesson Plans

The Election Process and the Campaign Trail (Grades 5-8)

The Democracy Project-Budget Making (3-6grades)

Dividing the Federal Pie

Curriculum Standards

McREL Standards
  1. From Content Knowledge, 3rd Edition, a compilation of content standards for K-12 curriculum, created by Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning (McREL).
  2. Civics – 6-12 Standard 19 - Understands what is meant by "the public agenda," how it is set, and how it is influenced by public opinion and the media. (
  3. Listening and Speaking 4-12
    Standard 8: Uses listening and speaking strategies for different purposes (
  4. Media 4-12
    Standard 10: Understands the characteristics and components of the media (
  5. Writing 4-12
    Standard 1: Uses the general skills and strategies of the writing process (
Technology Impact in Education Month Lesson Plans Adapted from: NetDay Speak Up Day Lesson Plan for Individual Response Technology in Schools: Students Speak Up © 2003 NetDay


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