Thinking About President's Day

Aloha everyone! Hope you have had an enjoyable short week thanks to President's Day.  It has literally flown by with all the hustle and bustle in my classroom.

In honor of President's Day we did spend Tuesday morning learning about our two famous presidents Abraham Lincoln and George Washington.

I started with a discussion on what students knew about President's Day and why we celebrate.  I had one boy who knew that February 12th was Abraham Lincoln's birthday.  That was about it on their knowledge of this holiday.

I read these books to the students.

I'm pretty sure I have had these books for at least 15 years.  I ordered them long ago from Scholastic.

After we read each one we brainstormed important facts about each of the presidents.

All of the facts came from the books except the part about the money.  We have been working with coins and one of the students mentioned that George Washington was on some money.  Another student then added that Abraham Lincoln was on a penny.  I pulled out my magnetic money kit and we found them on coins and bills. The students then copied these facts into their journals.

Our school has been training this year on how to use and implement Thinking Maps.  Instead of using the typical Venn diagram to compare and contrast I decided to go with a Double Bubble Map.
The kids loved saying Double Bubble.

I drew their names in two bubbles and we started from there.  I chose students to read through their facts and find similarities and differences between the two.  I wrote them out onto the map.

While I was writing on the board the students were following along and creating their own map with me modeling.

I did prepare these by drawing the two large circles before we began.  Much easier to get them started.

The students had to write one more difference and similarity for George and Abraham on their own.

I thought they did a great job and all of them really enjoyed creating their own map.  We decided to color code each side.  Red for George and blue for Abraham.  Red and blue make purple so we outlined the middle in purple.

This activity was not only informative but the kids learned so much creating their own maps.  The goal of Thinking Maps is to have students automatically making their own maps to organize their ideas.

I'm really looking forward to teaching my about the other maps in a variety of subjects.

Did your class do anything for President's Day this year? Always love to hear what others do in their classrooms.

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