**Lesson Title: **

Aldridge Sawmill – The Story in Numbers

** Subjects:** mathematics, Texas history and geography

** Grade level: ** 7th

** Rationale:** To practice math skills while becoming familiar with Texas’ “Boom & Bust” economy and the natural history of the east Texas Piney Woods

** Materials: **

- Overhead
Transparencies of the following maps*: (pdf, 114k)
- “Zones of Annual Precipitation in Texas”
- “Natural Regions and Subregions of Texas”

- Online computer access to http://www.texasbeyondhistory.net/aldridge/index.html
- “Aldridge Sawmill – The Story in Numbers” student handout* (pdf, 322k)
- Answer key to student handout* (pdf, 4k)
- Calculators (optional)

** Lesson Duration: ** Two 45 minute class periods or one 90 minute block period

** Objectives: **

- 111.23 Mathematics (1B), convert between fractions, decimals, whole numbers, and percents
- 111.23 Mathematics (2B), use addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division to solve problems involving fractions and decimals;
- 111.23 Mathematics (2F), select and use appropriate operations to solve problems and justify the selections
- 111.23 Mathematics (3A), estimate and find solutions to application problems involving percent
- 111.23 Mathematics (3B), estimate and find solutions to application problems involving proportional relationships such as unit costs and related measurement units
- 111.23 Mathematics (9), The student solves application problems involving estimation and measurement
- 111.23 Mathematics (12A), describe a set of data using mean
- 111.23 Mathematics (13A), identify and apply mathematics to everyday experiences
- 113.23 Social Studies (1A), identify the major eras in Texas history
- 113.23 Social Studies (7A), define the impact of “boom and bust” and trace the cycle of leading industries
- 113.23 Social Studies ( 8A) create thematic maps representing various aspects of Texas during the 19 th and 20 th centuries
- 113.23 Social Studies (9A), locate places and regions of importance in Texas during the 19 th and 20 th centuries
- 113.23 Social Studies (9B), compare places and regions of Texas in terms of physical and human characteristics
- 113.23 Social Studies (10A), identify ways in which Texans have adapted to and modified the environment
- 113.23 Social Studies (10B), explain ways in which geographic factors have affected the development of Texas

** Activity - Part 1 **

Step 1: Place “Zones of Annual Precipitation in Texas” map transparency on the overhead. Explain to students that Texas is large enough to have a wide range of rainfall zones within its borders. Looking at the map, ask students which area of Texas they think is most likely to contain dense forests. Point out that the Piney Woods region receives between 45-55 inches of precipitation annually, the highest in the state, and averages about 245 days of growing season a year.

Step 2: Place “Natural Regions and Subregions” of Texas map on the overhead. Point out the Piney Woods subregion of the Gulf Coastal Plains region on the border between Texas and Louisiana. Explain that the East Texas Piney Woods is part of a pine forest that covers the entire southern United States from the Atlantic Ocean to Texas and today contains the Sam Houston, Davy Crockett, Angelina, and Sabine National Forests, as well as many commercial lumber companies and sawmills.

Step 3: Point out that at the beginning of the twentieth century, lumbering was the state's largest manufacturing enterprise, first among Texas industries in generating income, and the largest employer of labor in Texas. Today the Texas lumber industry continues to be a large and important contributor to the state economy.

Step 4: Have the students explore the Aldridge Sawmill site at: http://www.texasbeyondhistory.net/aldridge/index.html

Activity - Part 2

Step 1: Explain that in this part of the lesson, students will learn more of the Aldridge Sawmill story that they began in Part 1.

Step 2: Distribute the student handout, Aldridge Sawmill – The Story in Numbers. Direct students to circle the correct answer for each question. Students may work alone or with a partner.

** Modification: ** Highlight pertinent information in each question and identify functions needed to answer each question.

** Student Product:** Solutions to 10 math problems

** Closure: ** Have students list all the mathematical functions they used to answer the handout questions. If time allows, go over correct answers with students.

** Assessment: ** Ask students what is meant by “Boom and Bust.”

** Daily Assessment for Part 2: ** Students will be expected to answer 10 math questions with at least 70% accuracy.

** Extension: ** Have students view the following website: http://www.texasbeyondhistory.net/kids/caddo/index.html

“World of the Caddo” is a children's exhibit on *Texas Beyond History* focused on perhaps the first "loggers" of East Texas, the Caddo Indians. In the section, “Living in Grass Houses,” students can learn how these ancient people constructed huge beehive-shaped houses and temples using tall pine poles covered with bundles of grass. There is also a teacher's lesson plan keyed to “World of the Caddo”.

Carol Schlenk

Education Editor

Texas Beyond History

University of Texas Archeological Research Laboratory

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