On Monday, September 14, I delivered my "entry event" for a PBL unit I am trying out on immigration. The project is linked to the novel we read, which is about a Jewish family fleeing Russia in 1919. The entry event is supposed to get the students interested/excited/engaged in the project, but also should introduce the driving question that will push the project forward. During the session the students listened to the poem from the base of the Statue of Liberty, looked at different documents related to immigration, studied photographs of different immigrant groups across the years, and analyzed a graph showing numbers of immigrants coming to the US by year. At the end of the class, they were given a boat ticket to travel to America. (A blank ticket, that they will later fill out with the fictional details of an immigrant from a country of their choice!)
The driving question is: "Why do people leave everything they know to move to a new country?"