Saturday, October 27, 2012

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


  1. Don't feel too bad about focusing more on Science than SS...I'm the same way. {Doesn't help that K-1 does not have SS curriculum at my school.} Thanks for making such a great mini-unit!

    Classroom Cupcakes

    {By the way I'm having an awesome giveaway this week, check it out!}

  2. You've been working hard!
    Social Studies is probably my least favourite too:)
    Thanks for the freebie.

    Grade ONEderful
    Ruby Slippers Blog Designs

  3. This is exactly what I need!! Thank you! I am getting ready to teach communities to my 2nd graders and didn't know where to start. So excited for this!

    Sara :)
    Smiling In Second Grade

  4. Sarah - That is super cute and so comprehensive...great job! Have a great Halloween! :oD
    Traditions, Laughter and Happily Ever After