My students and I do a variety of educational activities to enhance the curriculum and make learning fun and memorable. Lively discussions, team tasks, and instruction that is both whole-class and small-group make up a typical day in my classroom.
My students are a lively group with a ton of personality; they approach school and learning with a lot of enthusiasm, and are always willing to try new things.
They are also a diverse group who each bring their own strengths to the table. However, this diversity does bring some difficulties. Many of my students are English Language Learners, and new to our country. They are not only learning the curriculum, but also a new language and new cultural expectations. Using a variety of materials and strategies to help them master the skills needed to be successful is my daily goal. By the end of the year, I would like my students to have a broader world view, and feel confident in their own ability to solve problems and complete tasks.
So often, when students begin a year in my class, I learn that their least favorite subject is Social Studies. "It's BORING!" or "Who cares what happened way back then?!" are not uncommon sentiments.
I strive to ensure that every child who leaves my class not only loves history, but also has a greater understanding of how our past relates to our present, and how it can help us make a better future.
Exposure to engaging stories, fun historical facts, and primary source visuals is a great way to achieve this goal. Unfortunately, most of our history curriculum is written with a purely academic mindset, and is too full of dates and events, without the stories and context that make them interesting. This is why I would like Kids Discover for my classroom. These magazines present historical events in a way that is engaging and accessible for my students, and helps them make connections to their own lives. While they are learning about the history of our nation, they will also be practicing their non-fiction reading comprehension skills - a huge component in the Common Core standards. Kids Discover will give us a jumping point for research projects, class discussions, and simulation-based learning activities. I believe that these Kids Discover titles will be extremely beneficial to my students, and look forward to adding them to my classroom library.
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