This article discusses how to make social studies for and relatable for third and fourth grade students. After seeing my cooperating teacher teach social studies through acting, and having the students experience colonial times so that they can understand that perspective, I was sold. I really admire having them learn social studies this way because it allows students to move and it helps them pay attention. This is especially true for younger students, and it also helps students see another perspective; the colonists’ perspective. This article discusses this, but also adds a couple of ideas that I did not think about. One thing, is that the teacher had the students write a letter to their “relatives” in England, which helped even further with their understanding of the colonists’ perspective. Also, it helps illuminate the fact that the war was not good vs bad, but people wanting their freedom vs people who wanted to expand. It shows that wars are never that black and white; there is always reasons people do things. I really liked the letter idea, because third and fourth graders do not understand perspective much at that age.
Another idea that I really liked was that this unit could be integrated with literacy very well. Perspective is a literacy topic, so having them take what they are learning in literacy and apply to social studies is pure genius. Also, it is not like it is useless talking about perspective in social studies, because most of history is perspective. Humans rarely do something out of pure evil, there are usually motives and reasons behind what they do. Having students see that and understand that is extremely important for studying social studies. This topic is also huge for students in real life. In their personal life, students are going to be in situations where they only hear one side of the story, and they must understand that stories can be changed to fit one person’s side. This is that person’s perspective, but someone else has a different perspective. I truly like this way of teaching social studies.