Lessons Integrating Information and Communication Technology within a Curriculum Area


Gina Stelmach


Community Building

Grade Level

Grade 7 Junior High, Learning Center (Covers outcomes in Primary , grade 2, grade 6)

Subject Area

Social Studies

Overview of unit/lessons/activities (assumptions of prior knowledge/learning)

Students will:

  • Use Inspiration, chart paper or a black board to make a concept map that defines the elements of a community
  • discover the similarities and  differences between cities, towns, and rural communities by creating a Venn diagram and a map of their own community using Neighborhood Map Machine,
  • Work cooperatively to develop a community (map)  of a City, Town or Farm using Neighborhood Map Machine
  • Work cooperatively to build a 3-D representation of their community, using templates from MapMachine along with paint, paper, toy planes, trains, cars, buildings
  • present their Community to their peers emphasizing what is unique about their community

Correlations to ICT and curriculum outcomes

Information and Communication Technology
Students will be expected to:
BOC 6.2 use and create information texts in a range of media, using specialized text features of those media to support the communication, with teacher assistance
BOC 6.3
demonstrate effective use of computer keyboards, mice, and other input devices to produce final documents and presentations
BOC 6.5
safely exchange electronic mail and attachments with students and others selected by the teacher for curriculum research and communication purposes, with teacher supervision
BOC 6.6
understand and use with increasing facility, a wide range of terminology related to the technology they employ during their studiesPTS 6.3 (relates to 3.3) collaborate with the teacher and peers to use software to brainstorm, develop a thought web, and outline ideas under study
PTS 6.4 conduct simple research, then plan and create a representation of their learning, such as a storyboard, a multimedia presentation, an audio recording, a web page, or a print publication independently and in collaboration with others
PTS 6.5 record and edit still imaged, moving images, and sound to represent their learning to particular audiences, with teacher assistance
CT 6.3 create, process, and represent their learning using language, conventions, and procedures associated with educational media and information and communication technology, with teacher assistance
CT 6.5 understand and apply basic principles of design and style in representing their learning     
RPSD 6.2 use appropriate technological tools for concept mapping, problem solving, observation, measurement, calculation, graphing and charting to explore concepts under study

Projected timeline for preparation and for carrying out activities

These lessons will take approximately 11 periods over 2 weeks to complete.

Equipment Requirements: (computers, software, etc)

Inspiration software

Neighborhood MapMachine (ALR listing #51209 and 51210)

Teaching materials provided (Blacklines, worksheets, templates, teacher materials)

  • Photocopy templates for buildings on to card stock
  • Bristle board 
  • Assorted planes, trains and automobiles, houses, other buildings farm equipment, animals (from the Dollar store)
  • Scissors, glue, markers , tempera paint and brushes

  Resources available for teacher/student use (websites, references, etc)

Neighborhood Map Machine (available on Authorized List of Resources #51209)

Blackline master of Venn diagram (Venn diagram)

Detailed instructions for each activity or lesson (teacher notes, activity information, learning strategies, teacher role, student roles)

Day 1  1 period: Introduce the idea of a community.  A concept map works well to assess prior knowledge.   Using Inspiration, develop a concept map of what makes a community; depending on the level of your students you could use only pictures or pictures and words. This activity can be done as a whole class or in groups.

Introduce the idea of Urban and Rural communities or cities/towns/ farm communities using a Venn diagram to compare similarities and differences .

Day 2  1 period: Introduce the program Neighborhood Map Machine using an LCD projector.  You can create your own map step by step, first streets then buildings, parks and houses. If reading levels are low the program will read the information to the student. 

If you go to Explore  and choose City and Country the students will see a combined map of city and country and can answer what they like about each. (see sample)

Next they are given a short assignment to get used to using the program. See Assignment.

Day 3   1 period: Assignment instructions are passed out.  See Instructions for example.

Groups are formed communities are assigned  .Students are given a list of buildings and services (ie; library, stores, hospital etc) that are available to use in their community . They need to discuss and negotiate what goes  into their community. Each group will divide the tasks between them. Each group meets briefly with the teacher to ensure they are on the right track.

Day 4  1 period :  Students meet in groups and  decide on a name for their community as well as endeavor to answer the questions from the assignment sheet. Students, in their groups go to computers and start to design there communities. They should work cooperatively and each member should design a part of the map.

 Day 5  1 period: Continue with designing the maps once the maps are finished the notes may entered directly in MapMachine. If you choose this option then the map and the information can be printed out together.

Students can give a list of their requirements to the teacher to photocopy. All templates can be printed off MapMachine and photocopied on to card stock which holds up well to coloring, gluing and taping.

Day 6  2 periods: if possible use 2 periods together  to distribute and have the students color and cut out the buildings. These are best glued together and reinforced with paper clips until dry.

Day 7  2 periods: It works best if you can allocate a good chunk of time. Using the student designed and Computer generated map the students start drawing the roads and major land marks .Then painting in the roads , airports or train stations. Leave to dry overnight.

Day 8  1 period: Students can assemble the communities. We used dollar store dinkies and craft foam to bring a life-like quality to our communities.

Day 9  1 period: Each  group presents their community to the class , and answers any questions about their community.


Concept Map sample


(Venn diagram)


Neighborhood Map Machine sample


Assignment (word file)

Assignment (pdf)


Instructions (Word document)

Instructions (pdf file)


  Student products expected

  Each group will make a map and explanation of their fictional community on Neighborhood MapMachine. Each group will create and present a 3D representation of their community.

Samples (include teacher notes, assessment information, student work if available)


Photos of student work

Logistics (organization, grouping, management issues, access to technology)

Requires at least 3 computers in the room. I have done this activity in the learning center with 12 students so we were able to have manageable groups of four. One consideration is how much room the communities will physically occupy. The city can quite quickly grow to take over the class.

To keep them stable, buildings should be taped to the bristol board.

Assessment information (e.g., rubrics for products and/or process)

The students were assessed at all stages of these lessons.  They were assessed on how well they followed  the directions for the project. I  looked at

         Did they follow directions to create first sample map.

         How well they collaborated with the other members of their group.

         How well they followed the directions for the project.  

         How well they presented their community

Please see sample rubrics.  There are 2 sample rubrics for group work and one for the presentation.

Collaboration1 (word)


Collaboration2 (word)


Presentation word)


Possible extensions

Could be extended to include to an English Language Arts component by having your students write about a travel brochure encouraging tourists to visit.  

Adaptations for students requiring additional support

This project  was done  with students from the learning centre.

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