Statement of Goals: The Countries of Southern Europe
By Jon Kedrowski
The Big Idea (s)
After really thinking this through and struggling for a great way to link this all
together, I have decided that creating a Summit Conference involving the countries of
Southern Europe. This simulation activity will allow representative panels from each
southern European country to present their positions of for or against membership to the
European Union. The European Union (EU) is the Geopolitical economic entity that has
developed unity and cohesion within Europe in the past few decades. The countries of
southern Europe (Spain, Portugal, Greece, Italy, and Vatican City) covered in the text all
have unique situations of already being part of the EU with the exception of Vatican City.
The class will be divided up into groups from each country, and there will also be a group
that is representative of the EU council that encourages the extension of membership to
the southern European nations involved. The Students will have ample time to prepare
their presentations for the simulation, as the roles will be assigned on the first day of the
unit. This activity will allow students to actually step into the roles and see what it was
like for the people from those nations that chose to faithfully enter into the European
Union. All arguments for or against membership will contain information relevant to
each country’s status with culture, economics, agriculture, and government, thus allowing
the students to have a thorough understanding of the countries of southern Europe as a
whole with their relationship to the rest of Europe.
NCSS themes to be accomplished with this lesson:
-compare ways in which people from different cultures think about and deal with
their physical environment and social conditions.
-give examples and describe the importance of cultural unity and diversity within
and across groups.
NCSS Time, Continuity, and Change
-use knowledge of facts and concepts, drawn from history, along with elements of
historical inquiry, to inform decision-making about and action taking on public issues.
NCSS People, Places, and Environments
-construct and use mental maps of locales, regions, and the world that
demonstrate understanding of relative location, direction, size, and shape.
-examine the interaction of human beings and their physical environment, the use
of land, building of cities, and ecosystem changes in selected locales and regions.
NCSS Power, Authority, and Governance
-distinguish among local, state, and national governments and identify
representative leaders at these levels such as mayor, governor, president, or king.
NCSS Global Connections
-give examples of conflict, cooperation, and interdependence among individuals,
groups, and nations.
-examine relationships and tensions between personal wants and needs and
various global concerns such as use of imported oil, land use, and environmental
The textbook that is read in and out of class is only the tip of the iceberg for
background in this unit. I have a wealth of books as well as websites that include the
countries of southern Europe as well and the European Union as a whole.
Ever Closer Union: An introduction to European Integration, 2nd ed. by Desmond Dinan.
-This book covers the history of the European Union as well as current issues of
each country that is involved with the EU. Countries of Southern Europe are included
A Wider Europe: The Process and Politics of European Union Enlargement, by Michael
-Book includes the history and processes of the countries that went through
gaining their memberships into the EU. Aspects involving our NCSS themes are all
covered with the southern European countries included.
Redrawing the Map of Europe, by Michael Emerson.
-Covers the dynamics of change and countries stances on EU membership.
Explains how change will affect each country involved as well as the political map.
Rand McNally Answer Atlas, The Geography Resource for Students: pp. 108-121. (2003)
-This is an outstanding source for maps and geographical data for all countries
and continents of the world. Tons of facts!
-everything you ever wanted to know about the European Union. History,
culture, geography, current events, you name it its there.
-information on resources related to European Integration.
-European Union news, current and past events.
-Viewpoints and opinions of events involving European Union countries and the
people in the middle of it all.
-Delegation of the European Commission in the US, but another everything site
with lots of goodies!
-A great listing of even more websites of EU sources!
*More internet sources can be found within the class notes.
Topics and important pieces of information can be used in the students’ growth of
the concepts and ideas.
1. The history behind the people of southern Europe; their origins, languages and
religions, as well as their current lifestyles and cultures.
2. The economic status of each of the country and their past and current
relationship to membership in the European Union.
3. Primary Document samples, such as the Treaty of Maastrict in 1992, an
agreement between countries in the EC to become the EU in a global political
4. Images and maps from the internet of Europe and the southern European
Union Countries especially.
5. The exact chronology of the origins and developments involving the countries
of Europe and their relationship to the EU.
These are drawn from the NCSS themes that were part of the goals stated at the
beginning of this paper. These applications are relevant to covering the aspects of
geography, history, anthropology, political science, and economics in relationship to the
social studies as a whole in the countries of southern Europe.
1. Construct and learn about the history of each country in southern Europe,
from the distant past to the modern era, learn about their joining of the EU and
how they have developed in the years since. (Timeline activity)
2. Critically examine cultural-based differences and come up with ways to solve
3. Examine and determine the reasons behind the decisions made by the
countries that signed the Treaty of Maastrict in 1992. Looking at the primary
document and pulling out pros and cons of the actual affidavit is a great
historical way to examine the issues and why things turned out the way they
4. Hypothesize ways that economic, political and social agendas of each country
within the southern European realm could clash and potentially spark a
military conflict and if it is even possible.
Basic Skills Knowledge
Some of the important concepts to be developed by the students as the lessons
1. Dissect and examine primary documents
2. Absorb information and facts and draw conclusions
3. Fine-tune listening skills
4. Draw and accurately read maps
5. Present personal opinions backed up with facts
6. Reflect on past and anticipate or speculate on future developments
7. Actively communicate your point of view
Students come into a topic like the ‘Countries of Southern Europe’ and have
many reservations. Europe as a whole is a far away land that almost all of the students in
the class learning about it have never visited. To eliminate the uncertainty, activities that
include mapping initially and learning about the unique histories and cultures of these
countries will allow the students to open up their minds and ask questions about the far
off place. Perhaps the use of an interactive slide lecture early on with some strong
images of culture or even the city of Athens and the famous ruins will stimulate interest
right from the start. As the unit progresses and the students are given time to learn more
about their specific country for the European Union simulation, the acting out of the
simulation itself will allow the students to step into the shoes of the countries involved
and play out what really did happen to the countries of southern Europe when they
decided to join the EU. The global implications in today’s world will then come to the
foreground as the unit comes to a close. Procedural knowledge will spark questions from
students when they think about how the European Union and the member countries of
southern Europe will perform the management of their resources and economies on a
Daily Lesson Plans
[This example is missing the Two Paragraph summary of each each lesson. The
two paragraphs should include a summary of the content to be covered and
instructional strategies used]
Lesson 1: The Geography (climate, physical, and political)
Lesson 2: The History and People of Southern Europe
Lesson 3: The Economy and the European Union
Lesson 4: The Government Structure and the European Union
Lesson 5: Current Events of Southern Europe
Lesson 6: European Union Simulation
Task 4: Class Notes Organizer—50 Minute Lesson Plan
Lesson 1: The Geography of Southern Europe
Steps Facts/Concepts/Big Ideas Visuals/Handouts, etc
Bellwork: --Hold the students accountable (1)-See attached copy of
(10 minutes) for the reading assigned for reading homework assigned
today’s class from our from the textbook at the end
textbook: of last class period for
Chapter 12, Countries of today’s class.
Southern Europe pp. 248-263. (2)-Bellwork quiz question
--Reading is a general sheet. (See attached copy)
overview and introduction of
Southern Europe. (The people,
the economy, the government,
arts and recreation).
--When the bell rings, students
will have 10 minutes to
complete the sheet of questions
given to them covering their
reading assignment. This must
be done individually with no
Attention Getter: --Has anyone here ever been to (3)-Here students will
(3-5 minutes) Europe? simply respond to my own
--If so, have you been to any of questions just to get their
the Southern Europe countries? attention directed towards
--Where exactly did you go? the new unit of Southern
--What was it like there? Europe.
--When you hear of the
countries of Spain, Portugal,
Italy, Vatican City, or Greece,
what ideas pop into your head?
Lecture--Demonstration --A list of physical, climatic (4)-3 blank maps of Europe
Mapping & Interactive and political features relevant will be distributed to the
Slide Show Activity: to Southern Europe to be class. (www.eduplace.com)
(Approx. 30 minutes) covered. (See attached a versions of
--Color pencils and pens will what typical completed
be used to label the features on maps from this activity
the blank maps. should look like, these maps
--The bottom of the maps will would serve as guide to
be labeled with a key to grade maps turned in by
identify map features. students.)
(Cont.) --Slideshow images of some of (5)-Images for the
Lecture--Demonstration the features will be shown and Interactive Slide Show:
Mapping & Interactive discussed and then those (See notes below for
Slide Show Activity: features will be labeled on the sources of pictures that will
(Approx. 30 minutes) maps. be included in the show.)
--TOADS on LOGS mnemonic
will be used and applied when
showing students how to draw
and include things on their
Notes: Features to be labeled and identified by students on their maps.
Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece.
Small Independent Countries
Vatican City, Andorra, Monaco, Malta, San Marino.
Capital Cities (Starred on the map)
Lisbon, Portugal; Madrid, Spain; Rome, Italy; Athens, Greece.
Other Important Cities ( )
Barcelona, Pamplona, (Spain); Venice, Pompeii/Naples (Italy); Thessaloniki, Greece.
Land Forms (mtns ( ), islands and peninsulas labeled)
Pyrenees, Alps, Apennino mtns., Mt. Vesuvius, Mt. Etna, Iberian peninsula, Balkan
peninsula, Sardinia (Italy), Sicily (Italy), Crete (Greece), Cyprus (Greece/Turkey).
Rivers and Water Bodies (Circle or Draw on the map in blue)
Po River, Tagus River, Mediterranean Sea, Adriatic Sea, Atlantic Ocean, Aegean Sea,
Strait of Gibraltar, Bay of Biscay.
Climates (Climates will be shaded in on map with color pencil as I demonstrate them)
Mediterranean—Athens--(Hot dry summer/mild rainy winter. Snow is rare.), Semiarid
Steppe—Madrid--(Hot and Dry Summer/Dry year-round with short periods of moisture,
cool and dry winter), Humid Subtropical—Venice—(Warm, humid summer/mild winter),
Marine West Coast—N. Spain, Pamplona, Pyrenees and Atlantic Coast—(Mild and rainy
Landforms and uses not labeled on maps that may come up in class discussion:
Along the Mediterranean, the warm and dry lands support olive and fruit orchards. In
many of these areas, agriculture is being supplemented and even replaced by tourism.
The areas along the coast of the Mediterranean in Spain, Monaco, Southern Italy, and
Greece are all comparable to Florida for Americans. Often people in Europe plan their
vacations to the beautiful beaches in these areas.
Source for the geographical information in my above notes to be used in the map all
Rand McNally Answer Atlas, The Geography Resource for Students: pp. 108-121. (2003)
Images for the interactive slideshow with brief explanations
1. Running of the Bulls, Pamplona, Spain. Scene of people in the streets being
chased by the bulls in this crazy tradition!
2. Lisbon, Portugal. With some of these images I can discuss climate
(Mediterranean), architecture, and show a picture of the city and the surrounding
coastal areas. http://www.portugalvirtual.pt/_tourism/costadelisboa/.
3. Rome, Italy. The famous Roman Colosseum, built in the first century AD. Lots
of great pictures to chose from to add in the slide show.
4. Pompeii and Vesuvius. A beautiful picture of what the ancient ruins of Pompeii,
located in the present city of Naples, Italy, look like today with the shadow of Mt.
Vesuvius in the background.
5. Spanish Pyrenees Mountains. Topography-- tall steep mountains form a natural
border between Spain and France. http://perso.club-internet.fr/ptthome/spainbw-
6. Venice, Italy. A great image of people in boats on the water streets lined by the
famous historical buildings.
7. Po River, Italy. Images of the river, the Po Valley. The agricultural vale of the
Po valley is important to Italy and Venice which lies at the river’s mouth on the
head of the Adriatic Sea. http://www.offbeattravel.com/po.jpg.
8. Athens, Greece. The Parthenon, will also talk about the city of Athens, ancient
Greece and the upcoming Olympics.
9. Italian Alps. They form the northern natural border of Italy blocking it from the
rest of Europe. http://www.terragalleria.com/images/mountain/alps3541.jpeg.
10. Mediterranean Sea and Coast. Use images to explain coastline, climate, and
southern tourism interests. http://www.dalyan-delta.com/pinebeach.png.
Homework Assignment: --Students will be given a (6)-See attached
(Last 3-5 minutes) crossword puzzle with clues that crossword puzzle, made
have answers from the features on
identified in today’s mapping www.puzzlemaker.com.
activity. They can begin the (7)-Quiz for the beginning
crossword if we have time in of class next period not
class and finish it for homework attached because that
to be turned in at the beginning would go with the class
of next class. notes organizer for lesson
--They may also take their 2.
created maps with them so that
they can study for the quiz that
will be given at the start of next
class. At that time they will be
expected to turn those maps in.