California fourth Graders have traditionally done a California State Report each year. The California Travel Journal is a similar project with a unique spin. Students learn about the state by planning an imaginary trip and creating a travel journal (a diary of sorts but including researched information) by researching the following destinations:
• 1 National Park
• 1 State Park
• 1 Mission
• 1 Major City
• 1 Gold Rush Town
• 1 Tourist Attraction
The California Travel Journal has a map activity as well. Not only do students locate and color-in the four regions of California, but they are also asked to find major cities, rivers, mountains, and deserts. Students also use the map to show their travel route for the California trip.
This unit includes:
A California Travel Journal Sample
Project Directions Handouts (editable)
Map Directions Handout (editable)
Pacing Guide with Due Dates (editable)
Oral Presentations Handout (editable)
Route Planning Handout (editable)
Rough Draft of Map
Research Outline Note-taking Pages
Rough Draft of Bibliography Page
Student Checklist Forms to be Used on Due Dates
Student Writing Pages
Final Copy of California Map
Final Copy of Bibliography Page
Detailed Teacher Notes
Why you'll love this unit:
- Everything is very organized and the detailed teacher notes guide you through the project process.
- The unit is fun and motivating! Several of my students each year end up taking the actual trip with their family!
- Students have a lot of choices in this project which makes it fun for them and gives them greater buy-in!
- There is a sample report included to use as a ready made example.
- Any handout with directions is editable, as well as the rubric, which means you can customize it to your needs.
If you’d like to see more 4th grade social studies activities, please check these out:
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