Thursday, May 28, 2015

How do you teach 1st graders about the continents?


We wanted to teach our first graders to grasp the concept of how big our world really is, but didn't know where to start. How do you teach first graders about different cultures, countries, and continents? We searched online for ideas but couldn't find anything that suited our needs.  Consequently, we decided to create our own Continent study which included text first graders could actually read, note-taking, and writing. We launched the unit by getting the kids excited about different continents.  They walked around our "Continent Museum" and wrote things they noticed and wondered about the pictures and artifacts in the museum.
Once the students were excited to learn about different continents, we read about North America. As a class, we discussed the strategy of locating important words in a text to help us remember information. We talked about really good important, key words and about not-so-good key words. We  re-read the text and located a few key words from each page..
After a few days of working together finding important words, I decided to let my first graders try it independently on a different continent. They were amazing on their own!  Next, I put them in groups and they repeated the the process again with another continent. They wrote facts using their important words and made a poster about their continent. They presented their posters to the class and absolutely LOVED it!


Check out this poster! 

The students had to use a checklist when making the poster. Grab the checklist FREEBIE.
Students also completed their continent travel log after learning about each continent. They loved this part!

Do you want to try this in your classroom? We have created a Seven Continent pack with all of this plus more. The pack comes with detailed note-taking lessons, printable books about the continents, a student travel log, and more!


Click on the picture above to purchase our Continent Pack from our TPT store!

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