American Heroes & Holidays; a first look at Social Studies
Teacher: Lynnette Bedard
Cost: $256 or $64/month for 4 months
Youngsters love to learn about the important events in their family and the world in which they live! In this class, they will learn about the origins of our national holidays and famous people in our history as well as develop a sense of past and present. Students will also learn the geography of the United States and an understanding of maps.
Learning tools such as beginning reading and writing, as well as creative thinking will also be practiced through hands-on and kinesthetic activities. Mathematics will be included when appropriate for the lesson, but will not be the focus of this class.
Activities include play acting of Heroes to understand their experiences, creating models of national monuments, creating a family flag to understand the symbolism of flags and creating a map of Huckleberry Learning Center to develop an understanding of maps. For learning to be fun, it needs to be relevant to the child. Classroom activities will be closely tied to the children enrolled in the class with their interest and family background an important part of the class.
Just as family traditions and holidays serve to strengthen family bonds, national holidays and heroes bond us together as citizens. This will be a fun, interactive class where children learn about important celebrations and heroes of their nation.
The Holidays we will be covering include:
Labor Day, Columbus Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, and Martin Luther King Day, along with other holidays suggested by families as important to their Heritage; other holidays will be determined the first couple of weeks of class after talking to parents and children.
One of our most important holidays is Veteran's Day! When looking at this, we will look at how we use symbols to represent something. As a group we'll talk about why people, families, countries have symbols, and then at story time we will listen to a book about symbols and examine pictures of various symbols - flags, family crests, Team football helmets, and more. We will talk about symbols being used to unite people and show what they believe in. United States has many symbols such as Monuments, Bald Eagle, and National Flag. Since Veteran's day celebrations often include Flag Ceremonies, we are going to learn about the American Flag! We'll review 5 to 8 rules about the Flag and learn how to fold it using paper models, create a flag display to take home with the rules, which will help to develop fine motor skills, practice reading, and writing, we'll listen to and practice The Pledge of Allegiance and a national song - probably My county, tis of Thee. We will continue practicing these throughout the course. After the Pledge and Song, students will engage in a group discussion (group discussions encourage student to take turns, listen to others, and verbalize their thoughts while staying focused on a subject); they will state what is important to their families and what kind of symbols would represent their family. And finally each student will create a flag with a symbol that represents their family.
Some of the people we will learn about include Columbus, Sally Ride, George Washington, Abe Lincoln, Albert Einstein, Ben Franklin, Sequoyah, Clara Barton, Heller Keller and Martin Luther King Jr!
Our day of learning about explorers will be action packed! We'll discuss Columbus' voyage and examine a world globe, examine pictures of current ships and drawings of Columbus's ship to compare and constrast living conditions and risk in exploration, take measurements outside and mark the size of the Santa Maria to understand how really small it was! Then, we'll learn about Lewis & Clark and read short book. Using a printout of a Landform Map of America, we will complete a map designating mountains, rivers, etc, and trace Lewis & Clark's journey. Finally, we'll relax and watch a video about Sally Ride, modern day explorer, and then discuss similarites in space exploration, sea, and land exploration.
This class will have plently of individual work and group work so that they can work on both self-motivation and collaborative skills. They will also have time for thinking and writing, and also drawing activities to sharpen those fine motor skills. While we will frequently be working on the same things, extra learning will be available for kids that finish their work early. Come and join the fun as we explore some of our nations finest heroes and celebrate our holidays!