One of the important lessons we cover in kindergarten or first grade is on the topic of community helpers. We generally consider this to be police officers, firefighters, doctors, nurses, construction workers, mail carriers, etc. This is a great way to teach about the different kinds of people who help in our community. It helps students further understand how a community works and the important roles these people play.
There are tons of ways you can teach this lesson and make it super fun and engaging for your students!
Here are some of my favorite ways to teach about community helpers.
- Bring in guest speakers. Reach out to some of the community helpers in your area and ask them to come in and speak to the class! This can be parents in that profession, or friends. The guest can share what they do, how they help the community, and what a typical day in their profession looks like.
- Keep a journal. As students are learning about the different community helpers, have them keep a journal about the different people. They can draw pictures of them in uniform and get some writing practice by writing a couple of sentences about who they are and what they do.
- Discuss the differences between long ago and today. How were the jobs different? Are they easier now? This is a great activity to encourage critical thinking.
- List the different occupations. Use this list to get students thinking about what they want to be when they grow up. They can write it in their journal and you can go around the classroom sharing.
- Read books about community helpers. Whenever possible, adding a story or two about your topic will enrich your lessons.
- Watch videos about community helpers. There are lots of options available on Youtube. This video includes a fun song for students to sing or dance along to.
This download is nine weeks of lessons designed to easily create a journal for students to use, interactive notebook pages, posters, and so much more! It covers three topics, Community Jobs, Tools and Equipment for Jobs, and Today vs. Long Ago.
This resource covers 9 full weeks of detailed lesson plans. You’ll get everything listed above and some extras including poems and songs, how to dial 911, cut and label activities for different community helpers, a volunteer art handprint gift, police officer hat/headband, police badges, and firefighter hats. Everything you need for this exciting social studies topic!
What are your favorite ways to teach about this topic? Let me know in the comments!
Looking for more social studies fun? Check out my year long social studies bundle for kindergarten and first grade!
Worksheets are an essential part of the classroom. There are so many activities and crafts we can do with our students but sometimes there is just no way to get around good old fashioned worksheets. They are the best way for students to get practice and build fluency in whatever you are working on in the classroom. Worksheets are also just the best way to assess where your students stand in with the skills you are working on aside from taking a test.
Unfortunately, they aren’t always the most fun or engaging for the students. Despite any cute or fun designs they might have, they are still a sheet full of work for the student to complete, and that just isn’t the most thrilling thing to do.
I am all about keeping my students engaged in the classroom, and the best way to do that is to make learning fun. Sometimes shaking things up a little can make a big impact on the kids’ willingness to really dive into what we are working on.
With worksheets, it can be beneficial for your students if you think outside the box. Believe it or not, there are ways to get creative with worksheets so that your students actually enjoy it, I promise!
Here are some ways to make worksheets more fun
- Have students complete half. Let your students pick what half of the worksheet they want to complete. Letting them make the decision to do only the half that they want to do can take the pressure off to do the whole thing and shake things up just enough to take away the monotony of another worksheet.
- Use rainbow writing. Get out fun colored pencils or colorful markers and have them use different colors to complete the work. This will create a fun rainbow effect on the worksheet. It’s like educational artwork!
- Make them dry erase. Laminate the worksheets and get out some dry erase markers for the students to use while they complete it. There is just something about using a dry erase marker for kids. They love the feel of markers and their ability to easily erase and start over if they mess up. They will legitimately enjoy the activity, trust me.
- Work with partners. Everything’s better when you’re working with a classmate. You can also pair the students up and let them play against each other in a game of “Beat My Partner”. They can race to see who can complete the work first with a little friendly competition.
- Have a snowball fight! Have your students complete their work as fast as they can. Once they are done, check their work (to make sure they did their best), and then have some fun. Have everyone ball their paper up and have a “snowball” fight with them. This is guaranteed to be a hit!
Shaking things up in the classroom not only helps the students, it helps you keep things fun and exciting for yourself! Not to mention it will make you one of the most memorable teachers your students will have!
For more ways to make learning fun, check out my tips for using games in the classroom here!
For more learning resources, check out my shop here.
Do you have any ways you like to shake things up in the classroom to have more fun? Let me know in the comments!