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Social Studies for May

By Naomi O'Brien


*Click any image to be taken to the resource.

We love social studies in kindergarten and first grade. We love the subject that allows us the flexibility to teach children about ….EVERYTHING! The world. During the month of May, we dig into some fun topics. While we don’t subscribe to the idea that cultural studies should be confined to one month, we do enjoy giving nationally recognized culture months some attention. May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. We discuss who got the ball rolling on this celebration and made it a nationally recognized celebration. From there, we are always reading books and learning about notable people and events!

We also learned about an amazing tradition in South Korea! We learned all about a celebration called Parents’ Day. We loved making connections to Mother’s Day and Father’s Day where we live. It was so much fun to compare and contrast these two holidays.

Another topic we discovered had to do with addresses! Students were really curious about how addresses were assigned. They wondered why we can’t just make up our own addresses and zip codes! We learned why zip codes exist and we even created our own neighborhoods with a system for assigning numbers to each home!

The final topic that we studied was an important one: rights and responsibilities. We love discussing civic concepts in primary! We want to create informed citizens from the beginning. Imagine the type of students we would be able to work with if they’ve been discussing civic concepts since the age of 5! We believe that that would be extremely powerful. In this unit, we discussed the difference between rights and responsibilities. Most lessons stop of the concept of responsibilities by tying it into a lesson on school rules. We take it a bit farther and teach them about the Bill of Rights. Yep. We do! We simply explain that a long time ago, a group of men decided what would be a guaranteed right for an American citizen. We also show the WHO was in the room when those rules were written and ask them who is missing. Lastly, we discuss the fact that when these rules were written, everyone wasn’t a free citizen in America. It all matters.

Real topics are fun. Honestly- we love when these topics come up because the students have so many questions and great conversations. If you’d like to see any of these resources, click any image in this post!



Hi, I'm Naomi

I have been teaching elementary students for over 10 years. Effective reading instruction and accurate social studies at the primary level are huge passions of mine! 

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