How many times have you said that there just isn’t time in your school day to fit everything in? I know I have said it plenty of times. Now…this is not necessarily saying that I want to have a longer school day, because I know how tired the students and I are by the end of the day. I can’t imagine making it longer. However, we can work smarter, not longer. Science and social studies often get pushed to the side in order to fit in reading, writing, and math. By not teaching science and social studies to our students, we are doing them a disservice. So, what do we do? INTEGRATE!
You can truly integrate science and social studies into almost every part of your day.
Here is a break down of how I integrate science and/or social studies into my day.
We begin our morning with a Morning Meeting. During this time, we greet each other, discuss our day, and sing a song or read a poem together. I LOVE to integrate our science or social studies theme into our morning songs.
I pull a lot of my songs from my A Year of Songs packet.
I LOVE nonfiction books! Kids LOVE nonfiction books! When I first started teaching, I purchased books galore. I eventually discovered that I had a huge collection of fiction books, but my nonfiction collection was lacking! Over the past couple of years, I have been stocking up on nonfiction books.
Some of my favorites are:
Smart Kids Books by Roger Priddy
National Geographic Readers
I love that these come in different levels.
Magic School Bus
Scholastic True or False
There are tons more, but those are just some of my favorites that come to mind.
I also use my monthly Nonfiction packets.
We read the passages together, and then go back into the text to highlight the answers to our questions. We also use the graphic organizers and writing pages included in the packets.
I recently finished up my August and September packets in order to complete my ENTIRE year.
My August packet includes units on Watermelons, Germs, Safety Skills (including bike safety, car safety, and stranger danger), and Community Helpers.
My September packet includes units on Apples, Johnny Appleseed, The Constitution, Leaves, and States of Matter.
I truly believe that writing is the easiest subject to integrate your science and social studies curriculum.
We are constantly writing about our unit of study. The students love to research facts, and write about what they know.
This is not an area that I can integrate into every day, but I still do it when I can. We graph, sort, and complete word problems about our unit of study.
We have a 30 minute block at the end of our day for Integrated Studies. This is when I really dive deep into our science and social studies topic.
We create anchor charts, complete experiments, read more nonfiction text, etc. during this time.
I LOVE integrating science and social studies into our day. Integration allows for children to use what they are learning into many different formats. It helps make connections across the curriculum. Integration ties everything together!