Sunday, January 24, 2010

Grade One Social Studies in February

I would like to suggest some ideas for grade one social studies for the month of February.

As a French teacher, I used this month as the opportunity to link French and history by having my classes learn about the Voyageurs and the Fur Trade. This inevitably led to studying the habits of our famous symbol, the beaver as well as the bison. As a grade one teacher, I included these studies as part of the social studies curriculum. The class learned about Canadian animals in the life systems strand of science: beaver, caribou, elk, deer, moose, and bison.

Once again, I had some favourite picture books:

Little Caribou by Sarah Fox-Davies
Little Beaver and the Echo by Amy MacDonald
A Dog Came, Too by Ainslie Manson
Boris the Beaver by Marcus Pfister

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Picture books for January

The month of January is the obvious time to teach more of the earth and space and living things strands of the Science curriculum. The excitement of Christmas is forgotten and the students are returning to your classroom feeling refreshed and eager to learn new things. The new winter season can be the basis of your science unit.
I always approached the new seasonal studies based on:
the weather:- how it affects the behaviour of animals;
- our activities and clothing (this approach allows the students to
relate their learning to their own experiences)

I have a list of favourite read-alouds for January to arouse the interest of the class. These books as a perfect way to integrate the language program to social studies, science, math, art and music. There are also many information books written at the primary level of comprehension as well. Many of the best books of this type draw on the experiences of primary students.

"The Snowy Day" by Ezra Jack Keats is a great picture book to start the unit. It was written in 1962 and remains a perennial favourite.

The list of other books that I used follows:
Footprints in the Snow
Millions of Snowflakes
Amy Loves the Snow
Sadie and the Snow
A Winter Day
Penguin Pete
Animals in Winter
I am Snow

There are many other great books which I will list in a later post.
When Winter Comes (by Robert Maass)