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Japan and Ghana unit
Old 04-06-2008, 03:19 PM
 
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I am new at teaching 1st grade and I need to teach a unit on "Japan, Now and Long Ago" the same for Ghana. Has anyone taught both or either of these units to 1st graders? I am used to teaching 4th and 5th. Thanks.


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Old 04-06-2008, 06:07 PM
 
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Never done Ghana but definitely JAPAN! I lived there for 4 years and this is one of my favorite units. I have tons of books such as Suki's Kimono (teaches about self esteem), Grandfather's Journey (past), The Paper Crane (doing good deeds for others), Yoshi's Feast (getting along with others, working together) and MANY more!

I teach them how to count to 5 in Japanese (we practice daily)... ichi, ni, san, shee, go (sometimes we go to 10, depends on class. I teach them how to say hello and goodbye... koneechiwa (sp.) and sayonara.

We learn about Tokoyo and Mt. Fuji (highest mountain-dormant volcano). We learn about chopsticks (get some disposable ones from chinese place and let them practice picking up things... like cotton balls or something.

We make a Japanese flag (red circle represents the motto- Land of the Rising Sun). I show them Japan on a world map and talk about how it's made of many islands but 4 really big ones.

I have a print off of some Kanji (Japanese writing) with their English meanings. I make a chart with some of the symbols on it (doesn't have to be perfect just write them the best you can), usually about 20. They choose 3 or 4 to copy and use on the project below.

In Japan you see carp (fish) streamers everywhere. If you Google carp I'm sure you can find one to print off. I give each kiddo one and a magazine, they are to cut out dime size colors and glue on their carp to make it colorful. Then they cut out and glue on a light colored piece of construction paper at the top with the construction paper being vertical. The carp will stick off the paper a little. Then they pick their 3 or 4 Kanji words to draw below, then you make a cylinder out of it (roll it, just barely overlapping) and staple. Then attach a string at the top to make a handle. Now, they have made their own carp streamers.

We also learn about Sumo wrestling. They love this. I show them pictures. Also, I have several things made of origami that I show them. Then they make a dog or cat... Google that to, those two are not too hard for them to make.

I love Japan... can you tell!!!!! Hope these ideas help.
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Thanks
Old 04-07-2008, 03:42 PM
 
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Thanks for all of the ideas. You really love Japan! I will start looking for some of the books and I know I can find a picture of a carp online. The students should love this.
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Old 04-07-2008, 04:59 PM
 
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You're so welcome.
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another book I use...
Old 04-09-2008, 03:48 AM
 
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I visited Japan a few years ago and loved it! We ate sushi everyday, went shopping and sight seeing. It was beautiful!

ANYWAY! When we do our Japan Unit in the spring, I read the story "Momotaro: The Peach Boy" to my class. It's about a couple who wanted a baby but couldn't have one. One day they found a peach floating in the river and when they opened it up, out came a baby boy! He was very strong & in the end, he helped to save the village. We make a class book called, "What a Peachy Surprise!" I ask the kids if they found a peach in the river, what would come out of theirs? Then they write a short story about it and illustrate. The stories always turn out very creative!

Check out these websites:

http://www.storycardtheater.com/products.html
for large story cards to tell the story with. This is a really neat product.

Another great book I have I found at:
http://www.thejapanshop.com/product.php?productid=16447
It has the Japanese writing alongside the English.


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Thanks
Old 04-12-2008, 04:29 PM
 
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Thank you for the websites and the story. What great resources.
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