At the beginning of the year, getting to know our students is key to building relationships. Relationships are key to the success of our classroom. That’s what makes a family unit so important at the beginning of the year We get to know our students by exploring families and getting to know their families!
Families Unit: Turn And Talk
Since this family research project is done so early in the year, we focus more on getting the kids to turn and talk and share out. We do some drawing/writing but more of our focus is on the talking, sharing and creating class charts.
Families Unit: Class Charts
Each of the class charts is designed to spur conversation about various aspects of families and family dynamics.
We start by discussing who can be in a family. We kick off this activity by reading The Family Book by Todd Part and sharing who can be in a family.
The next day we discuss what families can do together.
We also discuss what families do that irritate us! This one is my favorite because it’s hilarious!
It’s also important that we share and discuss all types of families and how families are different! We compare and contrast different family types and who has siblings! This is also our introduction to Venn Diagrams. This works well because it’s a very concrete comparison that the students can grasp.
Families: Graphing Data
This families unit also makes for some great graphing questions!
This graph was a bit challenging so what we did was ask each student who lived in their house. We counted each person and that was the number they graphed. This made it more concrete for them.
For this graph, we not only graphed if we had a pet but we talked about our pets and how to care for them.
At the end of the unit, students drew a picture of their family and wrote/dictated something they like to do with their family.
We also did fingerprints as part of our families unit. This was a fun way to show that we are all unique and individuals even in our family!
For more on research project, check out this post:
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