Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Digging to China

I remember when I was little, I heard this expression and encouraged my dog (an avid digger) to dig to China so I could see the other side of the world.  Obviously, it didn't happen (not to mention my parents, once they stopped laughing, told me it was impossible).

Now, I get to teach about Ancient China in second grade!  We combine it with a unit about Ancient Egypt (and in third, they'll learn about Greece, Rome, and Mali).  I wanted to share with you some of the things we do with Ancient China.

Of course, there's always the Anchor Chart. :)

But, we started our journey into the past with a field trip. That's right - a field trip to China!  Except on this trip, no one gets motion sickness!  Several years ago, I learned how to make virtual field trips with Google Earth, so we began our journey by crossing the United States and Pacific Ocean until we got to Asia.  Oh yeah, there were lots of ooohs and aaahs.  (I just LOVE Google Earth!).  We then explored the Great Wall, the Panda Reserve, where the terra cotta warriors were found, the Huang He (Yellow River), and other areas of importance.  If you'd like to experience it, you can go here to my wiki page where it's a quick download (just make sure you have Google Earth already installed on your computer!). 

We continued to explore with a story about Chinese New Year, as well as other stories, and created our own New Year's dragons.  Throw in a powerpoint about contributions, Brain Pop, a foldable in our interactive notebooks for symbols and characters of Chinese writing, as well as the occupations of the people....and that was pretty much it.  

Hmmm.  Doesn't sound like a lot, but we had fun learning and practicing our symbols.  The camera must have taken a day off then. :)  I did post my unit on TpT and TN, in case you are interested in checking it out! 

At the culmination of the unit, we read about the Silk Road and created our own coins, drawing and writing about what we learned about Ancient China.  Did you know the Chinese have holes in their coins so that they could wear them on a string around their neck?  It helped in case someone tried to rob them....their money was hidden underneath their clothing!


Miss Foote said...

How fun. I love the focused look on their faces.

Chickadee Jubilee

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