Sunday, 12 May 2013

Actual Size Social Studies - A New Perspective on Teaching

I have come across THE most wonderful resource! I guarantee it'll change the way you think about teaching Social Studies.

When I was approached to review the resource, I wasn't sure what to expect. I mean, Social Studies is such a huge area with a huge number of ways of delivering it. I admit that I love teaching Social Studies (over here we teach each subject separately, so it's History, Geography etc). History is my "thang". Could there possibly be any avenues I hadn't explored in teaching Social Studies...? Wouldn't it be great to find a fresh approach? We all talk about needing to bring History to life for our kids, but what if they could actually step inside...?

Intrigued? Well try this for size. "Actual Size Social Studies".

Kids love making and interacting with these full-scale chalk drawings - it's the next best thing to actually being there! The book is crammed full of detailed lesson plans and precise blueprints to guide you in creating experiences your kiddos will never forget! Imagine being able to draw the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Imagine being able to step into a Viking longship or an Iroquois longhouse. Imagine their faces when they reconstruct the Statue of Liberty's torch, or help to "construct" Mount Rushmore. By turning your playground into a landscape for learning, you will be creating unique learning opportunities for your children by breathing life into history.

Have I grabbed your attention? Well read on...

The book is a treasure trove of lesson plans and precision plans. It includes a full list of vocabulary that children (and teachers...) will need when using the book.
There are 36 delightful activities, each one focused on an actual size or small scale drawing or diagram of a high interest Social Studies topic. The lesson plans are so detailed that all you have to do is gather up your resources and get to work. Each lesson consists of:

  • The Activity Page - providing teaching material for how to create and use the drawing or diagram
  • The Plan Page - providing the drawing or diagram itself.
Each Activity Page comes with a full list of resources, and gives step by step instructions on how to deliver the lesson - you can't go wrong. As a Brit, I was intrigued to know how the book would take on recreating Stonehenge, but the plans are amazing, and simple enough for children to follow. But my favourite has to be the Statue of Liberty's torch - it really instils a sense of proportion into children.

I absolutely love this resource. It appeals to kids of all ages and all types of learning styles. But put simply, it generates memorable and meaningful learning experiences. Think back to your own school days: what is your most memorable experience? I guarantee it will be a project or activity. 

If you invest in nothing else this year, you must give this a go. It usually costs $33.90 but Educents is offering it at a very generous 32% discount until 16th May. To find out more click here.

Tried Amazon Prime?

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