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Brand new teacher- 3rd Grade Social Studies!
Old 06-11-2016, 05:23 AM
 
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Hi!
I just accepted my first teaching position! I'll be teaching 3rd Grade Social Studies. I'm ecstatic! We'll be concentrating on Louisiana History and Geography. I've been Pinteresting and Googling. As a SS teacher, would I have a class library/reading nook? I'm trying to figure out how I'll set up my classroom. Any thoughts/suggestions?

Mostly, I just wanted to introduce myself and see if there were any other SS teachers out there!


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Congratulations!
Old 06-11-2016, 08:55 AM
 
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Congratulations on your first teaching job! You will love grade 3 students. It's my favourite grade. I teach in Canada so if you ever want to skype and compare communities, I'd be game.
Don't forget about using google earth too.
Happy planning!
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Old 06-11-2016, 09:15 AM
 
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Welcome to PT! You'll get so many great ideas - from SS teachers and otherwise.

I've never taught just SS, but I would definitely have a reading corner. There are so many great nonfiction books (and historical fiction) out there, and a reading corner would encourage more reading and give you a place to display and store the books.

If you don't have one yet, I'd get a large "pull down" map of the world and U.S., along with a globe. I use my globe in my classroom, but I use the pull down map more often. I refer to it when I'm talking about another country, because I want the kids to see where we live in comparison - it's too abstract otherwise. The globe is nice for small groups, but not as effective as the large map, in my opinion.

I would have a few tables with small groups set up, if you have the room. That way you can do projects without having to push desks together (unless your classroom has tables instead of desks already).

SS can be so much fun! There are so many hands-on activities to do, and if you tie it in with a story or passage, it really helps bring it to life for the kids. Have fun!
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Old 06-11-2016, 09:43 AM
 
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Welcome to third grade! You will love it!

I have not taught SS but I too would have a reading corner.
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Congratulations!
Old 06-11-2016, 10:06 AM
 
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Wow! How lucky are you to teach just social studies. I would love that job!

I have only taught in Texas but did find that students of this age have little to no knowledge of geography.

We started the year by memorizing our phone numbers. It really comes in handy if they need to call home for some reason. I found some phone pics with blanks to write all the numbers to start with. This was their study sheet for the week. They copied or wrote their number ten times Monday through Friday. They also wrote a phone number poem about themselves or their family. You start by writing the phone number vertically like you do with letters for an acrostic poem. If the first number is 7 for example then that line needs seven words. For zeros I had them draw a small symbol to represent themselves or family. The poem was their grade for the week. We also had a lesson about how to answer a phone and make a short call to ask a business a question.


The next week they worked on memorizing their address. If they live in more than one home I just have them choose one. I found a drawing of a house and then added three lines so we could practice self addressing like on an envelope. We wrote our address every day of the week three times. On Friday if they wrote their address correctly on an envelope I added a stamp, put a homework coupon inside and mailed it to them. This coupon was very motivating and fun for them to earn.


The next week we started learning where we are on the map. There is a cute book titled "Me on the Map" that makes a great way to start the lesson. We started by discussing what city, county and state we live in. I shared maps of each and discussed the differences. When they had a good handle on this concept then we added country, continent and hemispheres. Then finally we added the planet earth and the Milky Way Galaxy. I created a handout of concentric circles. The city was written in the center and smallest circle. The circle around that held the county or parish name. The next was for the state. You get the idea. This graphic organizer helped them visualize what was inside the other and what was smaller or bigger. For the children who have traveled very little this is a difficult concept so we studied this for two to three weeks while we also discussed other concepts about our community.

The biggest help I found in social studies is a newspaper designed for each state. It is called the Studies Weekly. It costs about $6 a child for the year. Each child will receive over 20 publications and for Texas I know it covers 100% of our SS standards. I used this publication for a decade by asking parents to pay for it and then my school district finally paid for it and made it our "text book" adoption. It is also a great way to teach kids to read nonfiction text for reading purposes. Your team mates will love you for this support. I choral read it with my kids the first semester and then started releasing more of the reading responsibility to them the second semester. Each edition has a crossword which helps build SS vocabulary. I can't say enough about how good this resource is for social studies teachers. I have also used the science paper which is equally good.

https://www.studiesweekly.com/


I also use many picture books to teach social studies. For example I found that the kids did not know the pledge of how to act properly during the pledge so I could picture books to help me discuss this issue in class. I will attach my list of SS books but some will be about Texas and those you can just ignore. I am sure you will find many books about Louisiana to use instead. Oops! Sorry it won't except my list of books.

What are your units in SS? Community? Economics? Government? State history?... If I have more specifics I can help more.

Have a great year teaching social studies. Sound like so much fun!


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Phone Pic
Old 06-11-2016, 10:08 AM
 
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Here is a picture for the phone number activity.
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File Type: pdf cellphone_letters_areacocde.pdf (387.2 KB, 51 views)
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Here is my list of picture books for SS
Old 06-11-2016, 10:14 AM
 
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The Name Jar (great story about different names from different cultures)

The Recess Queen (respect)

The Sneeches (be yourself)

Thank You Mr. Falker ( we are all different but capable of reaching high goals)

A River Ran Wild: An Environmental History by Lynne Cherry (history/cultures)

One Well: The Story of Water on Earth (culture and consevation)

Encounter by Jane Yolen (history/cultures)

Ox Cart Man by Donald Hall (enconomics)

Those Shoes (wants and needs)

The Tortillia Factory Culture and economics)

Sam and The Lucky Money (spending)

Too Many Tamales (culture and tradition)

Knots on a Counting Rope by Bill Martin Jr. (cultures/oral tradition of literature)

Train To Somewhere (history/culture/empathy and appreciation for family)

Dandelions by Eve Bunting (history pioneers of America)

Apples To Oregon by Deborah Hopkinson (history/westward movement)

A Chair For My Mother by Vera B. Williams (economics/saving/community/charity)

Tight Times by Barbara Shook Hazen (economics/loss of employment and budget)

The Tree That Would Not Doe by Ellen Levine (history of Austin and Treaty Oak)

Miss Lady Bird's Wildflowers: How a First Lady Changed America ( History and Austin landmark) by
Kathi Appelt

Pigs Will Be Pigs: Fun With Math and Money by Amy Axelrod

George Did It
by Suzanne Tripp Jurmain (about George Washington)

A More Perfect Union (constitution)

We The Kids (constitution)

Abe's Honest Words (Lincoln)

Yo, Millard Fillmore by Will Cleveland (Government/American Presidents)

Duck For President by Doreen Cronin (government)

If I Ran for President

The Star-Spangled Banner by Peter Spier ( government)

Francis Scott Key's Star Spangled Banner /Step Into Reading by Monica Kulling(history/bio)

Eat My Dust Henry Ford's First Race by Monica Kulling(economics/assembly line)

I Pledge Allegiance by Bill Martin Jr. (explanation of the words and teach respect for flag)Rissman

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZBTyTWOZCM

This is a 4 minute clip from a famous comedian in the 1950's. He explains The Pledge of Allegiance

Look Where We Live! By Scot Ritchie (community)

The Little House (changes in a community)

Weslandia (natural resources within a community)

Town Mouse and Country Mouse by jan Brett ( communities)

Mapping Penny's World

What is a Community? By Rebecca (community)

Me On The Map

Where Do I Live? By Neil Chesanow ( community and geography)

Energy Island : How One Community Harnessed The Wind and Changed Their World (commnity)

Community Needs: Meeting Needs and Wants in Communities by Jake Miller (community)

Hector's Escapades The First Night Out by Jane Scoggins Bauld (austin's bat colony/fiction)

The Story of Mother Tree by Jane Scoggings Bauld (local writer's story of how a man here in austin created Zilker Gardens and donated it to the city of Austin)

The Founding Fathers !: Those Horse Ridin', Fiddle-Playin', Book Readin', Gun Totin' Gentlemen Who Started America by Jonah Winter (history)

The Armadillo From Amarillo by Lynne Cherry (Texas)/geography)

Follow The Drinking Gourd (a story of the underground railroad)

Unspoken (underground railroad)

The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles (write a letter to Ruby she is still alive)

If a Bus Could Talk by Faith Ringgold (story of Rosa Parks)

Teammates (about Jackie Robinson)

Wilma Unlimited (about an Olympic winning runner who survived Polio as a child)

I Have a Dream (about Martin Luther king Jr's speech)


Sarah Morton's Day: A Day In The Life of a Pilgrim Girl (Thanksgiving) or Samuel Morton's day

Te Girl Who Loved Wild Horses (native American story/ many others by same author)

The Lorax (Earth Day)

Elizabeth Leads the Way (women's right to vote)

marvelous Mattie (women can be inventors too)

One Grain of Rice (folktail from Asia teaches generosity and how to be clever with math)

Journey To Ellis Island (immigration)

Dandelions by Eve Bunting ( pioneer times/ make connections to Little House in the Big Woods)

Pink and Say (civil War)

The Butterfly (World War ll)

Just a Dream (take care of our world/responsibility)

The Wall (Viet Nam/ Veteran's Day or Memorial Day)

Hanging Off jefferson's Nose (USA monuments)

How My Parents Learned to Eat (culture)

The Man Who Walked Between Two Towers ( September 11th)

The Great kapok Tree (rainforest)

Our Tree Named Steve (Earth Day)
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Me on the Map
Old 06-11-2016, 10:37 AM
 
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https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/...FREEBIE-350154

This would work well. Sorry I can't find my concentric circles organizer.
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More About Phone Number Poems
Old 06-11-2016, 10:44 AM
 
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http://www.simplycenters.com/2012/08...er-poetry.html
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Picture Books for Louisiana
Old 06-11-2016, 10:59 AM
 
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http://www.imnotthenanny.com/2014/08...louisiana.html

Some of these books may help you teach social studies standards.


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Social studies
Old 06-11-2016, 11:24 AM
 
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Ooh, I'm so jealous. That is my dream job. Hope you have a marvelous first year.
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Wow!
Old 06-11-2016, 11:33 AM
 
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Thank you for the links! I'm reading over them
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Old 06-11-2016, 12:28 PM
 
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Oh, my...you are an absolute wealth of resources. I, too, would love to teach just social studies. Studies Weekly is a great paper! Hope you are getting settled in your new home!
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Old 06-11-2016, 02:48 PM
 
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Quote:
This is a 4 minute clip from a famous comedian in the 1950's. He explains The Pledge of Allegiance.
The comedian is Red Skelton. Fabulous man, actor, comic. Also a painter known for clown portraits. His son died in Vietnam. Totally unrelated to this topic, when we do pantomine and Kamishibai Man, I use a clip of him performing a sketch on an old man playing golf that was filmed at the United Nations. Too funny!

Update: Actually, I think I'm wrong about the son and Vietnam. He did lose a son, but not to war. His Wikipedia listing is unbelievable. Such talent.

1956BD, thanks for the resources. I'm filing them away now.
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Concentric Circle Idea (by 1956BD)
Old 06-11-2016, 03:43 PM
 
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The concentric circle idea presented by 1956BD reminded me of a game my third graders played in social studies class.

The day before, students were given a piece of paper (ended up being homework) where they wrote their home address on the first line, city and state on the second line, county/parish on the third line, country on the fourth line, continent on the fifth line, and hemisphere on the sixth line.

The next day, this sheet of paper was given to their partner for the game...so the partner knew the correct answers when asking the other partner the questions. (This sheet was turned over by the partner rolling the die.) They also needed a die, a cup of tokens, and six concentric circles drawn on one piece of paper and labeled with 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 from center (1) to outside circle (6).

Partner one rolled the die. If it was a 1, partner two would say, "What is your address?" If partner one answered correctly, he/she took a token from the cup. If partner one answered incorrectly, he/she did not take a token.

Then it was partner twos turn. Partner two rolled the die. If it was a 6, partner one would ask, "What is the name of your hemisphere?" If partner two answered correctly, he/she took a token from the cup. If partner two answered incorrectly, he/she did not take a token.

Play continued until all the tokens in the cup were used. The winner was the player with the most tokens.

My third graders loved this game!

I collected the written sheets of paper so they could be used again in case I needed an emergency game for a sub.
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I'm thinking:
Old 06-11-2016, 03:52 PM
 
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I have 4 areas of standards: History, Geography, Civics, and Economics. I'm thinking of making 4 stations:

Library: Non-fiction books. Students would write down 3 facts from a book. Eventually, they would use this skill to write a research paper.)

Cartography: Students would do various assignments to learn about maps & geography

The Bank: create some sort of money earning system for the class. They would earn "raises" for completing so many assignments, and pay taxes. Taxes would go to buy extra recess time or a movie for the class, etc. They'd do their economics activities here.


City Hall: there would definitely be a ballot box for them to vote on how to spend taxes. Still working on this one.

What do y'all think? Do these ideas sound grade-appropriate?

Last edited by mycritter; 06-11-2016 at 04:13 PM.. Reason: I'm on my phone & put a sentence is the wrong place. Sorry!
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This is great about the pledge
Old 06-11-2016, 05:55 PM
 
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TZBTyTWOZCM
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All ideas sound good
Old 06-12-2016, 05:54 AM
 
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If you do the bank this can also help them understand money better in math so they will get double dipped and you math teaching partner will be appreciative.

Voting is always great fun when we have a presidential elections. There are many electronic versions online as well. For our last election we had some dads be actors for the day. They met the students as they arrived at school that morning. They were asking for the kids votes and shaking hands. They wore Obama and Romney masks! It was fun and the kids had an opportunity to learn how to shake hands.

Love the nonfiction reading idea. That will not only build SS background knowledge but also reading research skills.

You are on the right track. Keep going!
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Welcome to third grade!
Old 06-12-2016, 07:37 AM
 
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The best grade is third (in my opinion )!

Great suggestions here. Love studies weekly, but it was difficult for my kids to read independently: we did as it a class. I also like Brain Pop Jr. for social studies. They come with little quizzes too.

When she retired, my mother became active in politics. On one of her ventures to the capital building she got me little booklets about the state capital, legislature, and governor. You might want to contact your state government and see if they have something.

Good luck!
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Old 06-13-2016, 02:00 PM
 
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Congrats & welcome to the world of third graders. Here are a few resources that I found helpful:
Evan Moor Daily Geography
ReadWorks.org many SS topics that are free
Reader's Theatre many from Scholastic & Evan Moor
Dinah Zike has lots of foldables

Please let us know how you get along.
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Geography
Old 06-15-2016, 05:34 AM
 
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I created a map for my students that included everything around our state. Students had to memorize these bodies around the perimeter of our state. I gave them a word bank with a few "extra" terms to label a blank map for the assessment.

I also bought half a class set of city and also state maps. I created questions for each. Students worked in pairs to find the answers. The first pair to find the answer to a question would then help me to explain to others how to use the map to find this information. It was a fun hands on ac
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Old 06-15-2016, 07:17 PM
 
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Congratulations on your teaching position!!! Welcome to 3rd grade. 1956BD always has wonderful items to share and did a great job getting you started. I hope you have a wonderful first year of teaching.
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Maps
Old 06-17-2016, 04:08 AM
 
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For Geography, Communities, etc., I contacted individual states ( a couple from each Region) via email and asked if they would send their state maps and pamphlets for the students. They were sent fairly quick and the students enjoyed learning the similarities and differences of each state.
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Thanks everyone!
Old 06-17-2016, 04:54 AM
 
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I got to see my classroom! It hasn't been cleaned yet, so I'm not "in" there, but I have a rough idea of the furniture situation. Students have rectangle tables, not desks, and one small closet. Time to visit thrift stores for a good deal on book cases
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Old 06-30-2016, 03:30 PM
 
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You are awesome!!
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Old 07-01-2016, 06:23 AM
 
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I taught Language/Science/Social Studies this last school year for third, so we're in a similar boat. I'm sorry I'm so late to the game.

I inherited a classroom library, so I did not bring my own books in. I kept it going because my kids kept a book with them to read if they finished station work. If you have accumulated books, I would NOT bring the whole selection because being departmentalized in that way (and I'm assuming you're at least 4 ways since you're only teaching social studies) will be prone to lose books.

I would keep a couple of baskets with between 30 and 50 books for students to pick from. They won't spend tons of time free reading in your class.
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Old 07-01-2016, 07:14 AM
 
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in case you didn't see this in another post, you might get some ideas for economy from this website: https://www.myclassroomeconomy.org/grades/grade2-3.html
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Love it!
Old 07-02-2016, 03:19 AM
 
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Thank you, this is perfect!
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Collaboration
Old 08-08-2016, 07:33 AM
 
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Congrats on your new job! Welcome to 3rd grade - I love this grade.

I'm joining this convo late, but I'll post anyway ;-) Personally, I love teaching units and/or themes. Collaboration and group projects is really important in 3rd grade and the great news is that at this age they begin to get really good at it. In the beginning of the year there is a lot of modeling, scaffolding, graphic organizers, etc..but as the year moves on they begin to develop research skills.

Also, have you considered Newsela? This is a free site for Informational / Current Event texts. It is leveled and also arranged by topic. Google classroom also has a way to set up safe searching parameters for student's on-line research. Lastly, teachertube is a safe place to show videos or clips to supplement your lessons.

Hope this helps :-) Here's to a great 1st year!
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