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Our states relationship to our Country


New Member
I need an activity for 4th grade English Language Learners. In WA we study our state in 4th grade, but I recently discovered that my students don't understand the relationship of our state to the US. I was having them write letters to schools in other states to gather information to compare to our state. I had many students sharing who President Bush was etc. They didn't understand that President Bush is other states president as well. I want to do something engaging that can show the relationship by linking it to something real that they can understand. Any ideas?


Senior Member

I'm from Canada but doesn't each state have a govenor? What about the state flower, animal, motto, license plate design (http://www.acme.com/licensemaker/licensemaker.cgi?text=&state=Washington&r=454190575). Where is WA located in the USA? Which states are neighbours? What is the major industry/resource, popular past-time, weather patterns, temperature average? Is there a tourist attraction found only in this state? Is there a historical figure that was born in your state? What about a current event topic that is popular right now? Is this what you are looking for?


New Member

This is my first post. I have been lurking here forever getting wonderful tips but decided to finally put in my 2 cents on this one. I have been subbing for many years and did a long term in 3rd grade. My students were also having a problem understanding this concept so I told them each classroom was like a state and all of the classrooms combined were like the United States. The principal was like the president, each teacher was like the governor of a state.


Full Member

What a great teaching idea!! This would truly be a concept that the children could get into. To take this further, you could always hold an election at each table for a mayor and each table in your classroom could be a city/ The possibilities with this analogy are virtually endless. I love it!! Thanks so much for sharing.:)


New Member
Relationship between States and Classrooms

I've also been a sub for a long time (10 years) and find that students have no concept of individual states relationships to the rest of the United States. I teach in Los Angeles and have had many students reply with "Mexico" when I ask them if they have ever lived in another state. I think that the example of using a classroom as a state is great, and combined with other classrooms would be likened to the United States. I'll have to use this example with classes in the future. As it has always come easily to me, I find the general lack of understanding of geography frustrating even when using globes, maps, etc.