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Dogsled Adventure

Research dog sledding and the Iditarod competition and build a model dog sled team.

  • Grade 2
    Grade 3
    Grade 4
  • Multiple Lesson Periods
  • Directions

    1. Students choose a dogsledding subtopic to research with a partner, such as types of dogs used, how dogs and people train, weather conditions typical for the Iditarod, or provisions taken on a race. Students share information with the rest of the class in a visual report.
    2. Students find pictures or samples of soapstone animals made by carvers in Canada and Alaska. Note their textures. Study pictures of dogs and sleds. Create a musher and sled dogs with Crayola® Model Magic. Dry 24 hours.
    3. Use Crayola Multicultural Markers and Regular Markers to add details that make the dogsled team unique.
    4. Make basket dogsleds with chenille sticks and Model Magic. Connect yarn ganglines with Crayola School Glue. Fill dogsleds with construction paper provisions.
    5. Arrange dog sleds on a large table covered in white to simulate snow. Display visual reports. Dress in warm coats, gloves, and boots to answer visitors' questions.
  • Standards

    LA: Know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words.

    LA: Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.

    LA: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions with diverse partners on grade level topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.

    LA: Conduct short research projects that build knowledge through investigation of aspects of a topic.

    LA: Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

    LA: Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience in an organized manner, using appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details to support main ideas or themes; speak clearly at an understandable pace.

    SS: Use appropriate resources, data sources, and geographic tools to generate, manipulate, and interpret information.

    SS: Identify and describe ways family, groups, and community influence the individual's daily life and personal choices.

    SS: Compare ways in which people from different cultures think about and deal with their physical environment and social conditions.

    VA: Use visual structures of art to communicate ideas.

    VA: Select and use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning.

  • Adaptations

    Possible classroom resources include: Akiak: A Tale From the Iditarod by Robert J. Blake; The Great Serum Race: Blazing the Iditarod Trail by Debbie S. Miller; Storm Run: The Story of the First Woman to Win the Iditarod Sled Dog Race by Libby Riddles

    In small groups, students investigate dog sledding and the Iditarod. Students prepare an electronic presentation to share with classmates.

    Children work in small groups to write an original story about a dog sled adventure. A sketch of a scene from the story should accompany the story. Students take a digital photograph of the scene and upload it to a classroom computer. The team audiotapes the original story and connects the audio file to their digital photograph. The story is now ready to be presented to the class.

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