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Student Projects

Our Community, Our Stories

Authors: Emily Carter, Chris Baughman

Grade: 6th

Subjects: Humanities, Math, Multimedia, Science

Student ideas written on window
Students working at computers
Students writing by the ocean
Students writing in class

How have my stories defined me? How has my neighborhood taken shape over the years? How can we use statistics to understand a community?

Students looked at two key aspects in this project- “Our Communities” and “Our Stories.” Within looking at “Our Stories,” students examined themselves, their lives, and their own personal stories. Through this self-reflection, and reading the novel Bud, Not Buddy, students produced a personal narrative writing highlighting one of the most significant moments of their life. In examining “Our Communities,” students looked at the history of their neighborhood and/or key neighborhood landmarks. Through a partnership with the organization Outside the Lens students learned basic photography and created a final art piece that represented their neighborhood. Students also designed surveys and collected and analyzed data in order to understand our community mathematically



8 weeks

I can…

  • Utilize pre-reading strategies of examining text patterns, reading excerpts, and visuals to determine genre and plot/ purpose.


  • While reading fiction, visualize, question, connect, infer, identify meaning and impact of vocabulary, identify character’s point of view and journey, and predict to understand the narrative.


  • While reading non-fiction, identify main ideas and/ or claim and the details or evidence used to support.


  • Cite textual evidence post reading to draw comparison, determine the theme or purpose, and to support analysis of explicit text and inferences drawn from text.


  • Have great ideas by understanding my message and audience, and brainstorming and planning accordingly.


  • Organize and create a strong flow to my writing by using strong hooks, conclusions, transitions, and proper arrangement of episodes or information.


  • Bring the beauty through word choice, voice, and language techniques to increase the reader’s enjoyment.


  • Create a writing that is ready for publication by ensuring my conventions of writing (grammar, spelling, paragraphing, punctuation, and capitalization) demonstrate command of the English language.


  • Write informative text to examine a topic and convey ideas and/ or information.


  • Write narratives to convey real or imagined experiences.


  • Find and use the measures of center (mean, median, mode, & range) to describe a data sets’ center, spread, and overall shape.


  • Display numerical data in plots on a number line, including dot plots, histograms, and boxplots.


  • Make sense of problems by knowing what a problem is asking and figuring out a plan on where to start.


  • Persevere in solving problems by trying different strategies and seeking help from peers and teachers.


  • Use critique to improve my work.


  • Use revision strategies so that I know my final draft is my best work.


  • Complete quality work on time.


  • Consistently use strategies (my own notes, participating and focusing in class, emailing my teachers, attending morning tutoring, etc.) so that I am responsible for my own learning.
  • Neighborhood Art Piece: A blend of photography and writing that represents the student and their neighborhood.
  • Digital Magazine: A digital magazine using LucidPress that will include their artistic statement, personal narrative, neighborhood writing, visual display of class data, and photography.

    Cayden's art piece: You should always cherish good moments because you don't know when they will end Jacqueline's art piece: Always keep your head up. Andrew's art piece: Push hard, but know your limits. Jacob's Art piece: You could get a million dollars but it is not the money that makes a life time memory, it is what you do with it.

This is a great project to get students connecting as a community of learners. They are eager to share their research about their own neighborhoods and use photography to be creative with representing their neighborhood too!

I was surprised to learn about the history of my neighborhood. Sometimes you don’t think about where you live but it was interesting to see what the past was like. I couldn’t believe that my photograph was hung in an art gallery!