As the students continue their study on cotton, a wonderful opportunity to learn the states presented itself. The students wanted to see a cotton field, but where could they go to see one. The students were given a map of the United States with the states that are the main producers of cotton. When the students began to discuss which states possessed cotton crops, some of the students said Houston had cotton. The class began to talk about cities and states. The students learned that states include a great deal of cities. With that information, the students began to look for tools to help them figure out which states are apart of the cotton belt.One of the students began to use a puzzle of the United States. Another student thought the globe would be more helpful, while others chose to use the computer to find the answers. These students recalled the computer skills they learned this summer while working with Google and used the Google search engine to type in the words “Cotton Belt”. They all began to find answers. They soon discovered that maps they found matched the map that showed them the states that were a part of the Cotton Belt. They quickly began to answer the questions about which states contained cotton.
Allowing the children to ask questions and suggest ways to research this part of the project created more interest and enthusiasm. They were excited to research, write, and share their findings with each other. This created a rich learning opportunity, where the knowledge they gained was brought to life by the children’s interests.