Illegal Immigration Lesson Plan

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

This lesson plan is a tool for helping students learn about illegal immigration. Students will answer questions about a text and summarize important issues using charts and graphs.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this lesson on illegal immigration, students will be able to:

  • Cite textual evidence when answering questions about the text.
  • Summarize the issues surrounding illegal immigration.
  • Create graphs and charts that visually describe immigration trends.

Length

90 minutes

Common Core Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.1

Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.2

Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.7

Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.

Vocabulary

  • alien
  • birthright citizenship
  • border security
  • Communist
  • deportation
  • descendants
  • ethnic
  • expiration
  • foreign exchange student
  • fugitives
  • Great Depression
  • immigration
  • inspection
  • open immigration
  • quota system
  • repealed
  • security checkpoints
  • unauthorized
  • undocumented
  • visa

Materials

  • Copies of the worksheet
  • Copies of the lesson
  • Paper
  • Pens
  • Access to research materials
  • Chart paper
  • Markers
  • Testimonies of undocumented immigrants

Reading & Discussion Questions

  • Preview vocabulary with students before reading the lesson.
  • Read Illegal Immigration: Definition & Facts as a class, and discuss the following questions:
    • What are immigrants?
    • Turn and talk: Discuss how your family first arrived in the United States.
    • Why was open immigration encouraged in the 1800s?
    • Describe the quota system of the early 1900s. Why do you think it was abandoned?
    • What happened to immigration rates during the Great Depression?
    • What caused the increase in illegal immigration from Mexico, Central America, and South America?
    • What are some ways that people come to the United States illegally?
    • How have the demographics of undocumented immigrants in the United States changed in recent history?
    • Where do most undocumented immigrants come from?
    • Why is it important to note that most undocumented immigrants have been in the United States for many years?
    • What is birthright citizenship?
    • What is the primary role of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)?
    • How is U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) different from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)?
  • Ask if there are any questions; then give the students the lesson's printable worksheet to check for understanding.
  • Check the answers as a class.

Activities

Fact Sheets

Materials: Copies of lesson, paper, pens, access to research materials, chart paper, markers, testimonies of undocumented immigrants

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