If you are teaching Social Studies this year then these three products are going to give you a fun way to start class, an interactive bulletin board, and a neat way to get kids doing some random acts of kindness. Guaranteed to be crowd pleasers among your students!
Social Studies Bulletin Board - How Do You Measure Up in History?
This is my favorite bulletin board I put up all year! From pop music to political leaders to world record holders -- this bulletin board covers a broad array of 40
people in history with their photo, what they were known for, and their actual height in feet and inches.
I love hearing students say, "I'm as tall as the Queen of England!" Or maybe, "I didn't know we had a president who was only 5'4" tall!" My favorite is when they see Robert Wadlow Pershing who was the tallest human ever recorded at 8'11"!
Included in this bulletin board is a printable 9-foot ruler I've created so students can visually see how tall these figures in history were compared to how tall they are. Also include are 40 oval shaped images to be cut out and taped on your wall, or pinned to a bulletin board. I don't have a bulletin board right outside of my classroom so I had to resort to taping them on the wall as you can see in the preview photos. I usually have students do the cutting and taping of the photos and ruler to give them a sense of ownership.
The 40 individuals included are
Chandra Bahadur Dangi, Lady Gaga, Joan of Arc, Yuri Gagarin, Rosa Parks, President James Madison, Queen Elizabeth II, Ludwig van Beethoven, Average Female Height, Mahatma Gandhi, Marilyn Monroe, Malala Yousafzai, Winston Churchill, Napoleon Bonaparte, Harry Houdini, Julie Andrews, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Vincent van Gogh, Pelé, Orville Wright, Adolf Hitler, Albert Einstein, Mark Twain, Average Male Height, Wilbur Wright, Henry Ford, Walt Disney, Charles Darwin, Neil Armstrong, Nelson Mandela, Christopher Columbus, President John F. Kennedy, Elvis Presley, Barack Obama, Thomas Jefferson, Muhammad Ali, Leonardo da Vinci, Abraham Lincoln, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Robert Wadlow Pershing.
*All images used are in the public domain and copyright free. The image of Chandra Bahadur Dangi is authorized via the Creative Commons licensure and is attributed to Krish Dulal.
The Phrase of the Day - 20 Phrase Origins - Great for English or Social Studies!
If you are looking for a way to hook your students' attention at the start of class then this is a "tried-and-true" way that I've used for over 15 years in my middle school Social Studies classroom.
I've taught 13-14 year-olds my entire teaching career. To get my students focused and ready to start class we start each day with "The Phrase of the Day" as a way to get our bodies settled, our volume down, and our minds thinking. I show a slide that has some letters missing of a popular phrase, and if nobody is getting it then I'll point to a blank in the phrase and tell them the letter. Once someone gets it right I'll throw them a mint. They are 13-14, but you can see in their face that they are proud of themselves for getting it right and they all want that mint!
Once the phrase has been identified I'll show the completed phrase and ask students if they have any idea what this phrase means today or if they know where it originated. I'll then go through the slides explaining the origin of the phrase as well if there are debatable theories regarding the phrase origin.
The 20 phrases included are:
1. Saved by the Bell
2. Going to Cost You an Arm and a Leg
3. Getting the Bad End of the Stick
4. Baker's Dozen
5. Any Man Worth His Salt
6. Putting Up a Good Front
7. Put Your Best Foot Forward
8. Skid Row
9. Get Your Ducks in a Row
10. Mind Your P's and Q's
11. On the Deadline
12. Joined at the Hip
13. The Crapper
14. Chew the Fat
15. In the Limelight
16. Barn Red
17. Prom Court
18. Bought the Farm
19. Ring Around the Rosie
20. I Don't Give a Dam*
the "n" at the end of "dam" is absent on purpose due to the meaning behind the phrase, which originally wasn't a swear word at all - totally disappointing your students. However, you will most likely have a student ask if this one is OK for them to say the answer out loud, and I always respond with, "Yes, but now you need to know the true meaning of the phrase. And no, you cannot say this phrase haphazardly and say that your teacher said it was OK. The reason being, the meaning of the phrase has changed, and I don't need to get fired because of you." They usually laugh and understand, however, if you're not comfortable using this phrase then best to leave it out. You know your students and how well they can handle something like that better than I do so please use your own judgment. :)
I plan on continuing "The Phrase of the Day" as a series with new products coming out with 20 new phrases in them until I get 180 days worth of phrases, which is how many days my students are in school each year. Follow my store and you'll get a notification when I upload new products.
Random Acts of Kindness Task Cards for Middle School - Reflective Writing Too!
Looking for a way to hook your middle school students into helping them make someone's day? If so, then I think you're really going to enjoy these 32 Random Acts of Kindness Task Cards!
Whenever I tell someone I teach middle school it is usually followed with them saying something like, "Blech!! How can you handle kids that age all day long?!" This is something I share with my 8th graders and let them know that it is up to them to show people who feel that way that middle school students have a lot of good to offer the world.
These task cards range from opening the car door for members of their family, to baking brownies and delivering them to their local fire station, to walking their neighbor's pet and not taking any money for it, to telling their parent(s) they love them at a time they wouldn't normally do so.
Some of these will be much easier for some to do than others, so you'll have to decide for yourself how you want to go about handling a task that a student simply cannot do. This should be a good experience for all those involved so the goal is to keep it positive. A reflective writing culminates this activity, which if students feel comfortable they can share what they wrote with the class.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
32 Random Acts of Kindness Task Cards File:
Page 1: Cover
Pages 2-9: 4 Tasks on Each Page
Page 1: Two Options on How to Use These Tasks Cards in Class
Reflective Writing File:
Pages 1-2: Instructions for Writing & Lined Paper to Write On
After students complete a task you can give them one of the "Kindness Ribbons." You'll be surprised how many keep them in their lockers or come back years later to tell you they still have theirs!
I'd love to hear your feedback as to how these went for you this year! I'll be introducing this to students on the first day of school and blogging about this as the year progresses.
For the best deal on my BACK TO SCHOOL activities check out this bundle:
BACK TO SCHOOL - Beginning of the Year Starter Kit - 15 SOCIAL STUDIES PRODUCTS
Here's a few other products you might like...
Latitude & Longitude Puzzles Bundle - USA, Africa, Australia, & South America
Government Bundle: Preamble, Articles of Confederation, Electoral College & More
Middle School Economics Bundle: Checks, Budgets, Stocks, College, and Savings!
Civil War Bundle - 5 Activities to Engage Your Students - American Civil War
Cloze Reading Strategy Bundle - French & Indian War Through the U.S. Civil War
CHECK OUT THE REST OF MY BUNDLES TO SAVE MONEY!!
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