Saturday, June 27, 2015

"Spiffy Up" Social Studies Lessons with a Great Read Aloud!

Hi!  It's Shannon here from over at Bryant's Brain Train!  
Can you believe that it is almost the end of June?  Summer time please SLOW DOWN!  Even though most of us are still on our summer breaks, I want to share with you one of my favorite ways to "spiffy up" my Social Studies and Geography instruction.

Today it's time for another installment of... 
I want to tell you about one of my FAVORITE books that I use to use to enhance Social Studies instruction...Around the World in 80 Tales by Saviour Pirotta.

This beautifully illustrated book contains stories from around the world.  Each story is just a page or 2, so these read alouds are easy to work into any lesson with taking up too much time.  The tales are divided in the book by continent, which is great for both student and teacher reference.

Here are just a few examples of how I use the book to enhance our topical studies.  When studying the rain forest, we read "The Rainbow Snake" from Venezuela.  When studying bird adaptations, we read "The Kiwi's Gift" from New Zealand.  Economic principles can also be taught through stories like "White Pebbles"  from Ethiopia.  The possibilities truly are endless!  When time permits, we even make "souvenirs" or complete extension activities to accompany our "trips" to each country.  
For example, White Pebbles is a game that is played much like Mancala, so we play online at  What a great way to link critical thinking to geography!  
When we study bird adaptations and read "The Kiwi's Gift," students use found objects to design their own bird nests.

Want to see even more ideas from me related to this resource?  I would love for you to stop by my blog and read more at  

Best wishes for a wonderful weekend!