Friday, September 20, 2013

Social Studies Fun!

I have had so much fun with social studies these last few days and so have my kids! First, we started to write to our pen pals in Manitoba, Canada.  I am excited for many reasons for this, especially being able to be pen pals with a class from a different country.  They are a 2/3 split class so this will work nicely with my 1/2 split.  Since we live in the Detroit area, many of my students have visited Canada as it is a short drive away.  Once we looked at the map to see where our pen pals live, they learned quickly that it was much more than a short drive away!  Both the other teacher and I purchased this product on TPT so that we can have a variety of ways to write to each other.  I highly recommend this product if you want to try some different things than just sending letters!

We also started our "Green City" (named after our school) project this week as well.  This will be a yearlong project that both 1st and 2nd graders will work on.  This is also a TPT product that I purchased for this year.  It says that it is for 2nd-3rd grade, but I am making it work for my 1st graders.  I will be adapting this project as needed to fit the needs of my class and curriculum.  The students are really enjoying it so far!
First, a very sweet friend of mine came in before school started and drew the bird's eye/plane view map on a bulletin board that I have.  I think that the board will be helpful so I can easily staple/tack up what we need on there throughout the year.  The students came up with names for our city, and the final vote (and not a close one) was to name it "Green City."
We also discussed the various landforms shown in the picture.  Before I colored it, they made sure to tell me that they wanted their mountains to be snow-capped.  This is perfect as my 2nd graders study landforms.  We also discussed our pioneers that were arriving to our land.

Today, the 1st graders made water color fall trees as we are studying fall in science.  We discussed the different colors that we see on trees in the fall.  They will be making trees for the other seasons as well as the year goes on.  The 2nd graders were limited into their water color painting of their log cabins, but understood after we discussed the materials that the pioneers had available to them.  I promised them that they would have a chance to use more colors later this year:)  


  1. I love your Green City! I may take this idea to use with my firsties as well :)


    Mindful Rambles

    1. Thank you! My students are really loving it! I think that it goes well with both 1st and 2nd grade curriculum (at least in Michigan).