27 Visit our community.


Visit our community.

View Big Book.

Every child lives within a community. Some children in your class might come from the same neighborhoods. Others might come from very different places. Some children may know their neighbors, and others may not. Encourage students to share stories about their neighborhoods, helping them learn more about where they live and where others live.

About the Picture Spot is leaving a corner grocery store, heading home with a bag full of healthful foods. On the way, he sees many people working in his neighborhood. Ask students what jobs they see people doing in the community. Ask why each job helps make the neighborhood a good place to be. Ask what job students would like to do to make their communities better places.

Major Concepts

  • A community is a group of people who live and work together.
  • People in communities can be friends and can take care of each other.
  • Students can help make their communities good places to live.

Daily Lesson Planning

Day 1

  1. Display "Visit our community" and ask students about the neighborhood shown: Where is the school? Who is helping at the school? Where is the grocery store? Who is helping at the grocery store? Where is the fire station? Who is helping at the fire station? Then ask students if they have a school or a grocery store or a fire station close to their homes. Ask what other buildings are near to them and who helps in those buildings.
  2. Implement “Here's a helper in my community” (BB 68).

Days 2-6

Choose from the following:

  • Implement “Writers look for the letters that begin words” (BB 69).
  • Do a shared writing about neighborhoods. Write The best place in my neighborhood is __________ because __________ and have students fill in the blanks. Write The biggest helper in my neighborhood is __________ because ___________ and have students fill in the blanks.
  • Make community books. Give each child six pieces of paper—cut into the shape of circles—including colored circles for a cover. Have students look at the Big Book picture and other books about neighborhoods. Then have them draw and label important places, people, and things in their own neighborhoods. Staple one edge of their books together and have them create covers.
  • Take children outside to the neighborhood around the school and have them search for signs. They will probably find street signs, the school marquee, recycling signs, shop names, handicapped signs, and other markers. Have them draw the signs they find. Afterward, ask students to share their signs with each other and tell why each sign is helpful in the school neighborhood.
  • Show the opening of Sesame Street or Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood or another familiar children's show set in a community. Ask who lives in the community. Ask what they do there. Ask how the people help each other and make the community a nice place to be. Then have children imagine making a show about their own community. Have them write a name for their show. Have them draw a picture to go with the name. Let students know they can even make a song for their shows.
  • Do a simple social-studies lesson about the different places people live. Show pictures of cities and farms. Show communities from each part of the United States and each continent on the globe. Lead a discussion about what is different about these communities than the ones where students live. Then lead a discussion about what is the same. Hand out "Wild Places" and "Settled Places" and have students color the pictures. Have them put a star in the type of place that they live. Have them put a circle around the type of place they would want to live someday.

Concluding Days

  1. With the children, recall facts about their communities. Write sentences about the facts.
  2. Have children share some of their community projects and stories.
LAFS Standard:
TEKS Standard:
NE ELA Standard:

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English Language Arts:

Additional Activities

These activities offer options for continuing the learning in this unit. Whether your curriculum is skill-based or more open-ended, select the activities that are most appropriate for the children in your classroom. The Writing Spot is primarily a writing program, but writing can be integrated throughout your curriculum—in art, drama, reading, math, and science.

  • Build a  special spot.

Bring out blocks, plastic building pieces, cardboard boxes, or other building materials. Invite children to create a special spot from their communities. Have them present their special spots to other students and explain why they like this spot so well.

  • Make a map of the community around the school.

On a large piece of butcher-block paper, draw the outline of the school. Then ask students to identify what equipment goes on the playground and where. Have students draw the equipment. Then ask them where the streets are around the school. Have them draw them. Then ask where any important buildings are around the school. Have them draw them. Ask if any students live near enough to the school to put a start where they live.

  • Host a community guest.

Ask a community member (librarian, neighbor, shop owner, crossing guard) to come in to your class. Have the person tell about what they do in the community. Have the children interview the person, asking questions such as "How long have you lived here?" "Where were you born?" "What do you like most about living here?" and so on. Afterward, have students draw a picture of the person and write one thing they liked that the person said.

  • Share the history of your community.

Ask a member of the local historical society to teach your students about the history of your community. Encourage the person to show historical photos and tell interesting stories about how the community developed. Have students ask questions and draw pictures about the past of their community.

  • Imagine the future of your community.

Ask your students about how their community will be different in the future. Will the school be bigger or smaller? What new ways will people have fun? How will people in the future get around (cars, bikes, jet packs, transporters)? After stimulating a lot of thought about the future, have children draw a picture of their communities in the future and what they will be doing in them. Then have student present their ideas to the rest of the class.

  • Visit Web sites about your community.

Don’t forget the World Wide Web as a resource for learning about your community. Local government, public facilities, and major businesses will have sites that can offer a lot of information. Also make sure to check out historical societies and any city, county, state, or national parks that might be nearby.

LAFS Standard:
TEKS Standard:
NE ELA Standard:

Related Resource Tags

Click to view a list of tags that tie into other resources on our site

English Language Arts: