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firstyear1 firstyear1 is offline
 
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firstyear1
 
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Social Studies Projects??
Old 05-22-2011, 02:31 PM
 
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I am finally finished with my first year of teaching 5th grade and it was great! I am going to work through the summer to get ready for next year. One of the things I need is Social Studies projects. If anyone have any great ideas to share please do. My standards include Civil War, WWI and WWII. Thanks in advance!


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1956BD 1956BD is online now
 
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What about a time line?
Old 05-22-2011, 04:58 PM
 
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It could be about the war and a famous person who lived during this time.
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Social Studies Projects
Old 05-22-2011, 07:20 PM
 
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Love those topics! This was also my first year teching 5th and I taught Reading/Language Arts/Social Studies. I'm sorry, this will be a long post since I'm not able to upload documents yet.

Here are things I did during the Civil War (no one big project):
We began with slavery and the underground railroad. Our kids made a freedom quilt after reading Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt and then they had to write a persuasive letter to President Lincoln from the point of view of an abolistionist, plantation owner, or slave (chose out of a hat). This is a really great activity because even though they don't agree sometimes, they have to get in that mind set and back it up with historical data. Scholastic makes a really great simulation book for the Civil War, just be fair warned it is in depth and may take about a week or two depending on how much time you are devoting to it. The kids really love it and get a feel for how the soldiers lived and took pride in their side's wins and losses during the battles.

Some read alouds:
Pink and Say
Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt
Henry "Box" Brown
Two Tickets to Freedom (based on a true story)

Websites:
http://teacher.scholastic.com/activi...ound_railroad/
http://www.nationalgeographic.com/railroad/
http://www.radford.edu/~sbisset/civilwar.htm

There is so much you can do with it! Another teacher I knew divided her class up into four groups and the students had to write a newspaper (2 Union - 2 Confederacy) from that point of view and time period.


World War 1 & Great Depression:
We didn't really focus a lot on this era this year, but we did do some reading comprehensions and Brain Pops so the students got the idea and we watched Kit Kittredge: An American Girl Movie. Very good for the Great Depression!

Websites:
http://www.firstworldwar.com


World War 2:
We read Number the Stars as a read aloud and right now our students are researching propoganda. We review posters, movies, and audio clips and discuss the difference between advertising and propaganda. I pass out a picture of a poster to each pair and the students will look at the poster and figure out: who the ad is targeting, what is the message, why the country’s government thought the message was important, and briefly evaluate the effectiveness of the poster using these criteria: Is the message clear? Does the design have a strong impact? Is it convincing? Then the pairs will create their own propaganda poster based on one of these topics: rationing, recycling, secrecy, car-pooling, war bonds, enlistment, and women in industrial jobs. If you have enough time, you can have the students write a script for a propaganda commerical and either have them film it or audio record it (like a radio commercial/show).

Video:
Disney's On the Front Lines (Walt Disney's Propaganda videos)

Websites:
http://orpheus.ucsd.edu/speccoll/dspolitic/ (Dr. Seuss Political Cartoons during WW2)
http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/pow...ion_intro.html
http://www.firstworldwar.com/posters/index.htm

Now that you are bogged down with this incredibly long post, lol, I hope you enjoy your second year and have a blast with those topics!
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Thank you
Old 05-23-2011, 01:27 PM
 
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Thank you so much for your detailed information. I am definitely going to tryou out some of your ideas!
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Old 05-24-2011, 07:55 AM
 
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At the end of this year I had every student in my two social studies classes choose a person that we studied about during the year. Every child had a person of particular interest for what he or she likes. For example, I let one boy who loves baseball be Jackie Robinson. We went down to the computer lab MANY times. Every kid researched the person in the library and on the computer. Then they typed their own reports. After they finished the reports, I worked with one child at a time to correct any mistakes before we printed them. I had them draw a large picture of their person and color it. Finally each student made a "button" that when pushed by someone would make them come to life and give three facts about themselves. Everything we made was put on display during the museum. We sent home invitations that the kids made to all the parents and the administrators and former teachers. We also hung posters around the school telling people about the special wax museum exhibit time and date. On the day of the museum, the kids came dressed as their historical figure. I explained that the report was to be in third person but when they spoke they would be in first person. For example, one boy dressed as MLK Jr. said something like this every time his button was pushed, "Hello! My name is Martin Luther King Jr. I was the leader of the Civil Rights Movement. Here is a line from one of my favorite speeches, 'I have a dream that my four little children will one day be judged not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character'." (His was a little longer than most kids. ) I have never received so many compliments on a project. The parents, administrators, and most importantly, the kids loved it!


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Old 05-24-2011, 03:31 PM
 
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I've done a Film Festival slideshow project that would work well with anything that has lots of events. It's similar to a timeline, but kids illustrate each event on an 8 1/2 by 11 piece of paper and write a summary about it to create the slides. When all the slides are done, the kids glue them onto long, skinny pieces of butcher paper in order. At home they make a TV out of a cardboard box and we put the paper inside attached to dowel rods. When the kids turn the rods they move from slide to slide and can share their summaries!
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