4th Grade: Integrating Social Studies and Reading

If you are an upper elementary teacher, particularly fourth or fifth grade, then you are aware of the massive amounts of content that teachers are required to teach and students are required to master in the area of social studies. I have had parents say to me here in Georgia, "This social studies curriculum is beyond ridiculous!"  My response has always been, "I agree with you that it is a lot of material for a fourth grader to learn, but please understand that I don't decide the standards to be taught, I simply teach them."  With that said, I teach them to the best of my ability, and yes, it can be quite the challenge to get all of the material covered before standardized testing time.

After spending many challenging years trying to get all of the fourth grade social studies content covered,  the best solution seemed to be to try and  integrate the two subjects, such as work on reading skills while covering some of the social studies topics. It all seemed fine and dandy, but  the next problem would be trying to find social studies reading material to cover the content I needed it to cover.

Because I wanted very specific content, and I wanted it written in a certain way, I decided the best thing to do was just write the material myself.  Keeping in mind that my husband is a high school U.S. history teacher, I was able to converse with him about important details or facts that I should include,  in addition to referring to the Georgia curriculum standards. After working all summer, the finished product makes it very easy to integrate socials studies into reading.  I ended up writing 25 close reading passages that begin with Native Americans and end with Westward Expansion.  Many of the major historical events that fall between those two time periods are included in the close readings.  In addition to the close readings, there are teacher questions, as well as activities for each passage to be used in an interactive social studies notebook.  I am proud to share the finished product with you, and offer both notebooks to you for sale in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.  Here is a sneak peek, and then click on the links to get more specific details.

Please note that the grade level in which specific social studies content is taught varies from state to state. These notebooks happen to follow the Georgia fourth grade social studies content, so if you teach 4th grade in Georgia, this would be perfect for you.  If you are not sure if these notebooks follow the content for your state, please look closely at the detailed descriptions and then decide.







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