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Community Helpers

Compiled By: luv2teach77

Here's a collection of ideas to incorporate into a social studies unit covering community helpers.

Posted by: Sarah

Last year I included classroom jobs with a social studies unit on community workers. My classroom jobs corresponded with the different jobs we had been learning about . . . the police officer was our line leader (he/she directs traffic .. . electrician (in charge of lights) . . farmer (watered the plants) . . . Mayor (welcomed vistors to our classroom) . . ect. I made a bulletin board of the different workers.
The students attached their faces to the body of the worker. It was very cute.

The teacher next door to me has her students "apply" for classroom jobs. They have to write why they think they would be a good line leader . . .

i used it...good luck
Posted by: annie

Title - Members in a community
By - Scott Dan
Subject - Social Studies, Other
Grade Level - 1st - 2nd
E 325 sec. 02
Concept: Members in our community
1. 12 x 18" construction paper (a variety of colors)
2. Glue
3. Miscellaneous craft items (buttons, pipe cleaners, glitter, etc.)
4. Lined paper
5. Pencils
6. Crayons or markers
7. Large chart paper or marker board
8. Book: Tops and Bottoms, by Janet Stevens
9. Scissors
1. One pre-made Triangle Person. Do not add a lot of detail. Keep simple so that the children will not copy what you have done.
1. Read the book, "Tops and Bottoms," by Janet Stevens
2. Ask the children if they ever help out at home. Is there anyone else who helps out at home? What do they do? Stretch this concept of "help-out" past the home and into the community. Ask the children if they can think of anyone that helps the community? If no one offers any suggestions, ask them who helps if there is a fire? A crime? Then re-ask the original question.
3. Make a list of all the community helpers the children can think of along with what they do in the community. Ask how our communities would be different without them. Do we really need them? Should we be afraid of them? This last question is trying to break the stereotypical bounds that have been created between such community helpers as the police force and society.
4. Once the list is complete, tell the children that they are going to get to create one of those community helpers. Ask them if they have ever heard of the Triangle People. Show them your example of a Triangle Person you have already made.
5. Ask them to go back to their desks and take out a pair of scissors. Take them though steps a-d.
a. Take the 12 x 18" piece of paper and hole it the tall way.
b. Fold it from left to right (side to side).
c. Cut from the bottom open end to anywhere above the middle of the opposite side. Show them that the higher you cut up, the taller the person.
d. Take the left over piece and cut it on the crease. These two pieces can then be the arms of Triangle Person. Demonstrate how to place these on the person by making an X with them on the back of the Triangle Person. Show them that the points can face down or up.
e. Let them decorate the rest by themselves. Invite the children to brainstorm on what they think certain community members may look like (their uniforms). These may be written down next to their names and job descriptions that were written down earlier. (Note: this part should be done before you start to construct you Triangle People).
f. Depending on how much art experience the children have had in the past, you may show them how simple geometric shapes can be transformed into ordinary objects. For example, a blue circle cut in half can be a policeman’s hat.
6. After each child gets done, have it write a little bit about their community member. If this is done in the beginning of the year, pre-made forms could be made up to assist the children in their writing. For example:
My community member is a _________. He/She (let them circle or write in) helps the community by ___________. What I like most about (the name of their Triangle Person) is the way he/she _________________. Then leave a few blank lines for the children to write anything else they want.
7. Have each child present their community member to the class either at the end of the day or the following day (depending on when there is time). Hang these up outside the door in a large circle format. In the center of the circle have the words, "Our Community Circle."
E-Mail Scott!

Posted by: rachel

Write the names of several community workers on slips of paper (at least one for each child). Have each student draw one out of bucket. Then the students should trace their hands on a piece of paper. Have them write the name of the community worker on the palm of the paper hand, then write something that the worker does on each of the fingers. Also, discuss what would happen if a community lacked a certain part (i.e. What if there were no sanitation workers?). This will help them to see the community as a system.

community helpers
Posted by: teach

I would suggest for 4 yr olds keep it to figures they are most familiar with: teacher, bus driver, lunchlady, policeman, fireman, postman. You can have a little booklet made up with one page for each figure. Have a "teacher" figure and "My teacher's name is", A picture of a bus to color and repeat the same line with "bus driver". The lunchlady could be portrayed by a chef figure with a similar phrase. Use colorable pix for the policeman, fireman & postman with captions such as "The policeman is our friend. Firefighters help put out fires. The postman delivers our mail." Each day/week (however you do it) can focus on one person & you can set up activity/play areas that fit: a play school, cook food, driving a bus (a row of chairs), writing centers w/envelopes that can be "mailed" into a child's cubby, etc. We have had a fireman visit our classroom and we have visited the post office as part of our units. For snack we made "fire hoses" by stringing plain cheerios onto yarn & then eating them. We also made fire trucks by frosting graham crackers w/red frosting, using a piece of licorce whip for a hose (or ladder) across it & mini Oreo cookies for wheels. Hope these ideas get you strated!

career awareness
Posted by: Stefanie

We call our study "community helpers". I read the story "The Apron" by Eric Carle. I found a neat edition that comes with a little apron like the one in the story, but you could alwarys find one. I had one of the children wear it as I read the story. It is a true story about a relative of Mr. Carle's that he went to visit as a boy. This uncle was a bricklayer, I believe, and wore an apron. This apron was his "tool of the trade". I sent home notes for parents to send in their tools of the trade, as well, and we shared them in our room. The most important thing about this unit is the value that we placed on EVERY community helper, because it takes all jobs to make a community. We saw everything from a box cutter sent by a grocery store clerk mom to a stethoscope sent by another nurse mom. Every job was important. This was a simple unit, but one of our most enjoyable.

Posted by: Julianne

Here are a few things I've done with kindergarten and first grade:

- read books about different careers. Your school library should have some.
- make a book showing different careers. Each child drew what their mom or dad did, then added a line that said, "Mom is a doctor." or "Dad is a pilot." We put the book in our classroom library and we're still reading it.
- create role-playing opportunities for different careers. We've role-played vets, grocery checkers, waiters, cooks, postal employees, etc. by creating a rotating center in our room where these roles can be enacted. For instance, we had a post office set up for the month of February.
- do a phone or Internet interview with someone you would otherwise not be able to talk to. You could try to e-mail or phone your local politicians to see if any of them would talk to your class over the phone or in an Instant Message setting on the Internet. I've done phone interviews and had people e-mail us, I've never done IM.
- read the want ads to see what kinds of jobs are available. Highlight jobs that sound interesting and discuss what kinds of things a person would have to do to be able to get that job.

Posted by: maggie

I do a community helper unit in first grade. We wrote community helper reports in groups of five. Each group first picked a career, and then I gave them sentence strips with the following:
1. I use ____and _____at my job. (They filled in with tools.)
2. I work at a ____________. (place)
3.My job is to ___________________.
4.I wear a _________and __________.
5.I am a ____________________.
To practice the vocabulary of community helpers, I had pre-made cards that fit in the blanks. So sitting with thier groups, I would hold up a card. If it said airport, the the group discussing pilots would get that card and fill it in thier sentence strips. If the card said, "enforce the law" then the police officer group would get that card. Once all the cards have been passed out, they filled in their sentence strips and then rewrite their report into a final draft. We posted these "reports" under pictures they made of their community helper. Hope this makes sense! Have fun!

community helpers
Posted by: ECE teacher

I am currently in the process of thinking up a unit about community helpers myself. Since I have only 4 days to work with, and we already did a Fire Safety unit with firemen, I'm thinking of focusing in on construction workers. These are the ideas I have so far:
Books, books, books (of course). Checking out my local library I found quite an assortment of books that I can bring in to our classroom library.
A co-teacher's husband is a contractor, so we may be able to have a "special guest" come & visit and bring in some real tools. I may ask him to help children pound nails into boards (being sure children have safety goggles on!)[addresses eye hand co-ordination, motor skills, safety rules, co-operation]
For plumbers: I'm thinking about purchasing some plastic PVC pipes and joints (elbows, t's, connectors). The pipes would be cut to reasonable lengths. I could then just leave the pieces for free play, or create some "pattern cards" showing a set of pipes connected & have the children copy the pattern.[addresses patterning/math, co-ordination, follwoing directions]
Carpenters: Provide an outline of a house, something like 4" wide by 6 to 8" high, with a roof. A simple drawing. Then provide the children with pretzel sticks to glue on as the wood. OR: cut strips of construction paper in the same demension (4X8), with lines every 1/2 inch or 1/4 inch. This is the "siding". Have the child choose a color of siding for their house, then they have to cut the strips and glue them onto their house. You can do a similar thing for roof shingles if you like. Provide square/rectangles to cut out for windows, etc. [addresses fine motor/cutting & gluing, following directions, color identification]
Electricians: My husband does electrical work, so he has some tools that he said I can borrow. I'm thinking of taking his wire cutters and wire stripper (This tool pulls off the plastic coating on the wire so the copper is exposed)and some haeay gage(thick) wire. With direct adult (1:1) supervision, the children would cut a specific length of wire (about 6") using a ruler to measure & cutting with the wire cutters. They would then use the wire stripper to strip off sections of the palstic coating. They would then count out how many pieces of wire coating they have. [addresses eye-hand co-ordination, fine motor, measuring and counting skills.]

I have to think these through some more to see if they are practical and safe.
Hope these are enough to get you started on your road to making plans. Have fun!

Posted by: Tina

Have guests visit your school from various occupations to discuss what they do and what they had to do to get to that position. After the occupation study (reading books about different occupations, watching videos etc) Ask students to choose an occupation to present to the group. They can come dressed up as a community worker and present a couple of interesting facts about that occupation and tell why they chose it.

Posted by: Carol

Dear Patty,
I am a speech/language pathologist in a 3-5 intermediate school. My 3rd grade groups decided that they wanted to do a vocabulary unit on occupations. Each student had to interview an adult about their job - what did they do, where did they work, what 'tools of the trade' did they use. Each student had to present his occupation to the rest of the class.

The students then learned to use a digital camera to take pictures of each other. These pictures were inserted into Powerpoint along with graphics depicting job sites, workers and 'tools of the trade'. The students then recorded and inserted their voices into our 'living book'. The basic framework of the books was:

Slide 1: (Student picture and voice) "When I grow up I could be....."

Slide 2: (Picture of farmer/student's voice) "...a farmer and grow food for people all over the world."

Slide 3: (Picture of farm/student's voice) "If I were a farmer, I would work on a farm."

Slide 4: (Pictures of tractor, plow, hoe/student's voice) "If I were a farmer, I would need a tractor, plow, and hoe."

Each student got to work on their 4 slides depicting their occupation. They got to animate the text and graphics and record their own voices. Through this unit, the students learned to use powerpoint and a digital camera; had an opportunity to practice interviewing techniques and public speaking skills; and were exposed to new experiences and lots of new vocabulary. When the 'living book' was completed, we burned it onto a CD along with a Powerpoint reader and the the students took turns sharing it with their classes and families. They were so excited about the finished product!!

We are now working on a 'living book' depicting the life of a Civil War soldier with my 5th grade language students. This ties in with our 5th grade social studies curriculum.

(*One tip, I generally do multimedia searches on the internet to find graphics/videos/midis requested by the students and save them in a file the students use when compiling their slides. Searching for appropriate pictures/videos is very time consuming and I don't want to spend valuable class time doing it.)

Good luck with your project! I just learned Powerpoint this year and love it!

Career Fair
Posted by: Hermie

This year my school had a career fair. A committee of teachers organized it with a minimum of trouble. All our presenters (except 2) were parents. We had 15-minute stations that all classrooms rotated through. This wasn't enough time for the presenters, but was perfect for the kids. Some of our occupations included: fireman, beauty consultants (beautician and nail techs together in one room), nurse, veterinarian, Dept. of Wildlife, minister (for K-1-2)/ funeral director (3-4-5), professional race car driver (with his racecar in the parking lot), cattle farmer (with her cows), etc. The kids loved it!

I hope this helps.