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    By SusanTeach

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    I look at the state benchmarks and go from there. I found a lot of ideas in the Mailbox Superbook for grades 3-5 (1 book for each grade, but I pull different ideas from each one). You do a lot of community in that grade, and there's plenty on that. Here's my basic outline (but your benchmarks may be different). SB stands for Superbook. Keep in mind that I also use our social studies' book, so everything won't be listed here:
    Aug. - Community - map out their community using compass rose, key, etc.., community quilt (SB-3rd)
    Sept. - Community and Govt - current events (SB-3rd, p.241)
    Oct. - Govt - "path to the presidency" (p. 44 Aug. '04 Mailbox Int.), "If I were president" (Instructor - Jan.'02)
    Nov. - Govt - Mock election, whitehouse.gov (tour of the whitehouse), map project (SB-4th)
    Dec. - Citizenship - bike safety, school/neighborhood
    Jan. - Africa - compare to our culture/area, immigration map activity (SB-4th), Grandfather's Journey book, MLK Jr.
    Feb. - Community - welcome center maps to plot journey (p.240 SB-3rd)
    March - Work and money - create a business, guest speakers (parents)
    April - Goods/Services - (SB-3rd) collages
    May - Africa - (Mailbox Dec. '93)

    This is what I have from 2 years ago - but I'm still getting with a colleague sometime this week to "fine tune" it more. I also ordered a ton of mapping and community things, but they're at school. At least it gives you a general idea.

    View the original thread this idea was posted on



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