Social Studies for November

By Naomi O'Brien

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November. What a time to be thankful! We are thankful for a fresh take on traditional stories this month. Let’s jump in.

We have to start with Thanksgiving. We won’t get into it all here because we break it down in our book but you should know that we don’t play that “pilgrims and Indians” stuff. I mean, it’s historically inaccurate amongst the other problematic narratives that we love to focus on (i.e. “Squanto the Friendly Indian) but outside of that, we could focus on the whole reason that Thanksgiving became a national holiday. Sarah Josepha Hale. Her story is fascinating and kids LOVE to hear all about her thirty-year campaign to get Thanksgiving celebrated nationally.

We also turn specific attention to Native Americans as November is recognized as Native American Heritage Month. We learn about some important events and notable indigenous people. We learn about the National Day of Mourning and study some cool accomplishments by lots of people!

We had to get some geography in! We thought it would be fun to study popular foods that are massed produced for Thanksgiving and locate them on the map! We studied various land and water forms that are necessary to get a particular crop to grow.

Lastly, we wanted to sneak a little civics in- so we learned about the three branches of government. It is so much fun to watch the connections happen when they remember that we learned other civic concepts ( like when we learned about Congress).

It was a great November!

Naomi

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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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