The Gold Rush
4th Grade Oral Language Resources
Students will:• Learn about The Gold Rush.
• Access prior knowledge and build background about the significance of The Gold Rush.
• Explore and apply the concept of minerals.
Students will:• Demonstrate an understanding of The Gold Rush.
• Orally use words that describe The Gold Rush.
• Extend oral vocabulary by speaking about minerals.
• Use key concept words [mine, miner, gold, mineral; The Gold Rush].
Explain• Use the slideshow to review the key concept words.
• Explain that students are going to learn about The Gold Rush:
• What is a mine.
• Who works in a mine.
• What is a mineral.
• What is gold.
• What was The Gold Rush.
Model• After the host introduces the slideshow, point to the photo on screen. Ask students: What do you see in this photo? (people inside of a cave, mine). What are they doing? (sitting around, discussing, digging).
• Ask students: Why do you think their helmets have lights? (so that they are able to see what they are doing).
• Say: The Gold Rush was a time when gold was discovered and people from all over the world rushed to be a part of it. There were many gold rushes, including one in California. Do you think there is still gold to be discovered today? (answers will vary).
Guided Practice• Guide students through the next three slides, showing them gold. Always have the students discuss why finding gold was a big deal back then.
Apply• Play the games that follow. Have them discuss with their partner the different topics that appear during the Talk About It feature.
• After the first game, ask students to discuss whether they'd want to be a miner. After the second game, have them discuss other precious minerals.
Close• Ask students: What were some of the effects of the Gold Rush?
• Summarize for students that since many people rushed to search for gold, the population in California increased. Also, many miners were forced to leave their families in order to go and mine. Encourage them to think about how people traveled to California during that time.