Tag Archives: social studies

Clay Colonial Houses

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For my Grade 5 students, we did Colonial Houses with our air dry clay. Typically, I have done these as a watercolor project but because we were doing clay this year. I felt that it would be a good tie in to their Social Studies Curriculum.

We used bamboo skewers, pencils, plastic forks, and plastic knives as our tools. I do have a few clay tools but not a class set so using these inexpensive tools worked just fine. I put several examples of Colonial Houses from Williamsburg up on our screen in the classroom so that they had references.

We discussed what the houses might be made from: brick or wood. We talked about all the things they needed to include in the buildings such as windows, doors, siding, chimneys, steps. etc.  We also talk about the Salt Box house with its 2 story front, pitched roof and one story back.

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I pretty much let them go off on their own after we talked about the buildings, things they might want to include and the characteristics of the air dry clay. I always like to see what creative things they come up with.

Explorer Portraits

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The Social Studies books come with decks of cards. The teachers use them for all sorts of things. I like to use them for portraits. For fourth grade, we looked at the early CAlifornia Explorers. For fifth grade, they look at the explorers of the world. I have had the students use chalk pastel, colored pencil or marker for this lesson.

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They frame their portraits in interesting borders and use a name ribbon across the picture so that viewers know who the explorer is.

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Student used the social studies cards for reference or they could find other images of their explorer.

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