Sample Education Paper on 3-Day Content Area Thematic Unit Planning Guide

Complete the one-page 3-Day Content Area Thematic Unit Planning Guide. See the instructions below.

Guidelines for completing the Planning Guide

  1. What is the specific theme/topic for this content area unit?

Choose a theme/topic in your content area that you would like to address in a unit plan. (i.e., History – Overcoming Adversity; Science – Uniquely and Wonderfully Made; Music – The Poetry of Rap Music…).

  • If you are an English teacher, consider selecting social studies since the teaching of this subject is similar to the teaching of English, but with social studies content. You may NOT use ELA as the content area.
  • If you are a math teacher, your theme should relate to a real-world application of a concept you are studying. For example: The Black Plague and probability.
  1. What is the essential question for the unit (real-world connection)?

This is the main idea or major concept you want your students to think about and understand during this unit.  It is the focus of your unit.


See this link for help.


  1. Content Area and Literacy (ELA) Standards for this unit.


  • You will find links to MS Content area standards If you are not in MS, use your state’s standards.


Make sure your chosen unit theme/topic aligns with standards for your chosen grade – i.e. you can’t do a solar system unit if that topic is not part of your grade level’s science standards.



  • You need to list at least 2 standards for each of the 5 key ELA areas: Reading Literature (for fiction texts,) Reading Informational, Writing, Speaking and Listening, and Language. You can find a description of these 5 key ELA areas on pages 17 and 18 of the document linked above. You will defend your attainment of these standards within your unit as part of your final project.


  • The Unit you create for your Final Project must meet your selected Standards.


  1. Text set: List each item using correct APA format. Explain your rationale for choosing each item. Create a Text Set of two (2) items related to your chosen topic or theme.  These items will be used throughout the rest of this course and in your final project.  You must have access to the actual items – either hard copy or online is fine.  You will be required to use these items in your final project.

Rationale – explain, in a couple of sentences, why you selected the item you did.  What value is it going to add to your unit?  Your reasons could be anything from content area information, literacy skills reinforcement, attention getting, reinforcing background knowledge…..

Description of Genre Types:

  • Non-fiction text – Informational (factual) book, chapter, magazine or newspaper article (print or online), or website.
  • Fiction text – examples include children’s story/picture book (yes, you can use this with older students), short story, chapter book, novel, graphic novel, poem. As a reminder – fiction is “made up” so this may not be a factual (informational) picture book.
  • Media item (audio/video): videos, animations, audio speeches, audio books…