Communities Mini Unit

I finished up my communities min-unit with my class. 

I'm actually surprised with how much I enjoyed it. Ha! I'm a little ashamed to admit that I have never been that great at teaching first grade social studies. I just didn't put in the time that I should've. I always put way more into science units. (I know isn't that horrible!) This year we got some new social studies standards at my school, so I'm taking this opportunity to better my better social studies curriculum. Once I started this unit on communities, I started to really get into it. I know we all have different social studies standards, but I bet they are close enough. Last week I posted about part of the unit. You can click here to see that.

We added to this big anchor chart as we went along. 

Students had their own graphic organizer to go along with it (shown below). 

As a homework assignment, families were encouraged to do a community scavenger hunt. They brought it back to school when they were finished, along with pictures or souveniers (like a sticker from the fire department). 

Under the activities column, we talked about things we like to do in our community. One of the Oregon standards is to explain how seasonal changes influence activities in the community. So, we brainstormed things we do our in our community in each season and talked about why these things are seasonal. Some examples for our city were: a pumpkin boat race, a balloon festival, rose festival, parkway bike days, and zoo lights at Christmas. Once we got started, the kids actually thought of some that I didn't. We made a class chart then they chose one of two to write and draw on their graphic organizer. 

Another standard is comparing how people lived in the past and present in the community. I had fun with this one! I LOVE history, so I did a little research and found some old pictures. I showed the class these pictures and we made a quick timeline (another standard) to show how our city has changed over the years. My school is in Tigard, Oregon, which isn't all that old (1850s). We talked about how the city was mostly farmland 50+ years ago. Our school is turning 90 this year, so we compared Tigard 90 years ago to Tigard today. I made a big venn diagram to brainstorm with the class, then they did their own. They only had to choose two things from each category to put on their own. They turned out pretty cute. 

Last week I already talked about the communities flip books and writing prompt  but here is another picture. They turned out pretty cute!


UPDATE: This unit was updated! Here are some new pictures:

This pack is available at my  TPT store.

And here's a freebie! Here you go. Click on the picture to download:
clip art by KPM Doodles

Doubles Freebies

Just a quick post tonight! We're working on mastering doubles facts right now. Here are a few things I'm using. Click on each picture to download!

Just roll a die and double that number. Cover a pumpkin with that number. You could make this a partner game or just an independent activity.

I also made some story problems for their math notebooks. There are 5 similar story problems. CLick on the picture to download.

Last year I posted about this game:

Click on the picture to download.

Communities Unit

Hi everyone! The rain has finally arrived here in Portland, Oregon. Usually we have months and months of rain, starting in October and pretty much sticking around through June. But this year, October has been beautiful! We've been so spoiled and now on to the rain. It's not stopping us though. We still went to a Harvest Fest outside yesterday in the  rain with our little guys. That's what raincoats are for, right?

Anyway....on to the stuff you really want to read about! We are learning about communities right now. First, we defined the word community. I don't have a picture of this, but basically, it was just a chart with the definition (I left some letters out so they had to help me fill it in). Then after some discussion, I had them each draw something they might find in a community and we added it to our anchor chart. 

Then, we talked about the different types of communities. The very familiar City Mouse and Country Mouse is the perfect book to read. (That book doesn't include the suburbs, so I talked about that afterward.) Then we made these flip books to show urban, rural, and suburban. They drew pictures on the outside:

then wrote about what they might see in each community on the inside.

We talked about the benefits of living in each type of community. The book City Mouse and County Mouse really helps with this. Then each student chose one type of community that they would prefer to live in and we wrote about it. I think I'll make this into a class book because they turned out super cute!

Next we talked about community helpers. We discussed the words citizen, jobs, service, and responsibility to start off. The overall goal of the lesson was to help them see that in a community, citizens have a responsibility to do their part to make the community run smoothly. Every job is important and provides some sort of service. There are so many cute units out there about community helpers. I made this little sheet to make that connection between a community helper (and their job) and the service that they provide to a community. 

I have more to share next week from my community unit so come back and see. 

You can check out this unit here.

Pumpkin Freebies!

Hello everyone! I know it's been SO long since I've posted. It's been so hard to find the time to blog this year. Hopefully I'll get better as the year goes on! Fall in in full gear now and we just got done with our pumpkin unit. I love moving into pumpkins right after our apple unit because there are some great connections to be made. To go along with your pumpkin unit, I made this pumpkin freebie pack for you all. I hope it is useful to you! 

clipart and frame by KPM Doodles

As a class, we measure and weigh our class pumpkin. I use this to record our results:
You can use these writing prompts during writer's workshop. One is narrative writing and the other is informational.

clip art by Carrie; frame

I wrote a short story with some comprehension questions and a graphic organizer. I tried to make the story readable for my firsties.


We are working on writing sentences and I'm really trying to help them understand what makes a complete sentence. With this worksheet, students match the subject with the predicate (although I haven't started using that language yet). Then they write a complete sentence of their own. We do this a lot as a class before. During morning message, I'll start with the subject and as a class we'll finish the sentence to make it complete. (Later in the year we add more details to the sentence to improve our sentences.) There are two centers in my October literacy menu that also work with this skill.

After reading a nonfiction book about pumpkins, read each pumpkin statement as a class. Have your students color the pumpkins with the true statements.

As a class, we made this Venn diagram comparing apples and pumpkins. 
This is last year's picture. I keep forgetting my camera!
And yes, they came up with all of these ideas!

You can get these freebies at my TPT store.

For more printables like these, check out my Fall, Halloween, and  Thanksgiving packs.

You can find this here.

You can find this here.

You can find this here.