1. Explain to the students that throughout history, groups of individuals have formed planned communities to address economic, social, religious, political and technological problems. For example, in the Great Depression, the U.S. government created communities to end poverty; the Shakers formed communities to better practice their faith. Even our nations’ capital, Washington, D.C. is a planned community.
2. Share with the students that, together as a class, you are going to design a planned community and brainstorm with them the information the class will need to learn in order to plan a community. Below is the beginning of a list of information needed and where that information might be obtained:
- Average cost of a home in the community – real estate agent
- Average cost of property tax – real estate agent
- Average cost of utilities for a home owner – real estate agent
- Average cost of building a school – school treasurer
- Average cost of running a school – school treasurer
- Average cost of community buildings such as a recreation center – mayor
- Governmental expenses – mayor
- Average tax payer taxes – village tax administrator
- Average industry taxes – village tax administrator
- Cost of road construction and maintenance – county engineer
- Cost of running a company – local business leader
3. Once the list is complete, compile with the students a list of questions for each person in the class to use in interviewing community members who will be invited to come to class either individually or as a panel to be interviewed.
4. When the community members come to the class, divide the questions so that many students can ask questions and also encourage the students to ask follow-up questions for further understanding.
5. After each interview, have students keep notes of what they learned.
6. Once they have a general understanding of costs, begin designing the community. The following are some questions for the class to consider during the design process:
- What is the reason or theme of your community? (i. e. environmentally safe community, sports community, peace and justice community, fine arts community)
- What is the name of the community?
- What type and how many industries, homes, stores will be in the community?
- What type and how many public buildings will be in the community?
Eleanor Roosevelt - Juvenile
Freedman, Russell. Eleanor Roosevelt, a Life of Discovery. New York: Clarion Books, 1993. (Newberry Award)
Rosenburg, Pam. Eleanor Roosevelt. New York: Compass Point Books, 2003.
Winget, Mary. Eleanor Roosevelt. Minneapolis: Lerner Publications Company, 2003.
Eleanor Roosevelt - Adult
Embridge, David (ed.). My Day: The Best of Eleanor Roosevelt’s Newspaper columns, 1936-1962. New York: First Da Capo Press, 2001.
Feinberg, Barbara Silberdick. Eleanor Roosevelt, a Very Special Lady. Brookfield: The Millbrook Press, 2003.
Mattern, Joanne. Eleanor Roosevelt, More Than a First Lady. New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, 2003.
Roosevelt, Eleanor. The Autobiography of Eleanor Roosevelt. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1961.
Roosevelt, Eleanor. You Learn By Living. Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1960.
This lesson was developed by Debra L. Clark, Kent State University.