Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Around the World Wednesday ~ Social Studies ABC Book: Part 1

What in the world do you do at the end of the school year for Social Studies at the Middle School level?

Well...something fun and reflective, of course!

ABC Books are not new by any means, but this is my first go 'round with them.  I guess I've always thought about them as more of an elementary school thing.

Let me tell you, my students have been working on their ABC Books for several days and they are LOVING them!

I am loving them, too!  My from the great educational value of this type of project, but also, a little selfishly, because my students are doing all the work while I provide supplies and facilitate the class period.


Here's what I did:

Day 1 ~ Students listed A - Z down the side of their notebook paper and came up with one word we studied this year that started with that letter.  {For people, they could go by first or last name.}  I approved their lists before they could move on.

Days 2 & 3 ~ Students wrote down 3 or 4 bulleted facts about each term a notebook paper and drew a rough sketch for a picture or example that somehow related to the word.  {We had to be a tad creative to come up with a representation for a few words, but we made it.}  Students had access to all notes from the year as well as a Social Studies textbook, which we never use, a workbook, and a few other resources in my room for this.  I approved their work before they could move on.

Days  4 & 5 ~ Students began working on copy paper at this point.  They made a heading with each word, wrote 3 - 4 complete sentences from the notes they took, and added the picture to the entry.  I wanted them to have the rough draft from the previous days to cut down on wasted copy paper.  After this was completed, they picked 2 sheets of construction paper for book covers and decorated them.

And that, my friends, is where Part 1 ends....

Here are some pictures to enjoy in the meantime.

{Please pay no attention to the tables...we have been gluing and using markers/color pencils for about a week, so they are a mess!}

{7th Grade Social Studies GPS covers Middle East, Southern & Southeast Asia, and Africa.}

I'll be back next week with Part 2...Stay tuned!

Enjoy :)

Making It {and smiling},


  1. Love this idea!!!! I want to try to do it as an icebreaker the 1st day of school for Science... then maybe during the last week, they can make one over all they learned... you have my mind racing! Thanks for sharing!

    Your newest follower,

  2. What a cool idea!! Like you, I would have thought the ABC books would have been a little more elementary, also, but I'm glad that your students loved it so much! I'm sure they liked showing their creative sides. I'll definitely have to try something like this during my student teaching or my first year teaching next year! I also really liked Leslie's idea about doing this at the beginning and end of the school year- it would really get the students thinking about what they've previously learned.

  3. I LOVE this idea. Although the students may think this is elementary when I assign it, they will realize that it is actually fun and actually difficult. The students will really enjoy this and so will I!

  4. Are you in GA? It looks like you are based on your topics which look like 7th grade SS standards in GA.

  5. Are you in GA? It looks like you are based on your topics which look like 7th grade SS standards in GA.

  6. Such an awesome idea. I too have heard of ABC books but only had heard of them being used in elementary classrooms. I however, love how you used them in a middle school classroom. Along with using it to reflect over what the students had learned throughout the year. It was a great way to bring the school year to a close.