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This activity includes several games that use the atlas and the globe.
Before doing these activities, it will be necessary for students to have completed their personal atlas from the Welcome to My World activity. Playing games in a cooperative group is a fun way to learn to use the atlas and the globe to locate information. As students look through their atlas to answer game questions, they will be able to use the tools of the compass rose and map key to help them come up with the correct answers.
By using cooperative groups to help answer the questions, students will be able to learn with their peers how to use their atlas and how to find answers. It will make all students feel that they are contributors and to be able to use their particular skills to help the group. Many second-grade students will not have the life experiences to help them with understanding geography, being in small groups will give the students a chance to learn from some diverse life experiences of those in their group.
Keeping the cooperative groups small and structured will enable the teacher to observe and assess the individual contributions to the group. It is also necessary to use small groups to help second grade students who are just learning to manage themselves and get along with others in a working situation.
This activity contains two games played in cooperative groups that will give them an opportunity to use the information collected in their personal atlases.
5. Understand and use basic concepts and skills.
Invitation to Learn
Take the class on a ride. Have them place their chairs as if they are riding in a car. Tell them you are going on a journey. The teacher is the driver. As you drive along, point out different sites you see. At some point, pull the car over and tell them that you are lost and don't know which way to go. Ask the students what you could do to help you reach your destination, leading the discussion to the importance of knowing how to use maps to help you get to where you want to go.
Suggested Car Riding Sequence
- Get in the car and explain you need to find a particular amusement park.
- Buckle seat belts.
- Roll down your window so you can get a good view.
- Start the car.
- Spot a grocery store.
- Spot a post office.
- Make a left turn.
- Spot a zoo.
- Spot a fire station.
- Make a right turn.
- Make another right turn.
- Make another right turn.
- It should be right here but it is not.
- Try the dirt road.
- Hit lots of bumps.
- Hit a skunk.
- This is probably not the way to the amusement park.
- Try a steep hill.
- Go down the steep hill.
- Drive on the winding road.
- I give up. I don't think we can find the amusement park this way.
- I wonder what we could do to find the amusement park.
Wheres The Tourist?
Curriculum Extensions/Adaptations/ Integration
Lindauer, P., Petrie, G., (1997). A review of cooperative learning: an alternative to everyday instructional strategies. Journal of Instructional Psychology. Volume 24.3, p 183.
This article focuses on cooperative learning as an instructional strategy. It discusses the flexibility teachers can have in choosing how and what goals need to be accomplished. It also gives examples of effective cooperative learning strategies.
Castle, S., & Arends, R.I., The practice of teaching: cooperative learning. ERIC Source (ED350277). Retrieved November 21, 2005, from ERIC website
This is an analysis of the input of teachers who belong to a cooperative learning network. The data collected indicates that: (1) use of cooperative learning in schools has increased; (2) instruction has moved toward a more active, student-centered activity; and (3) teachers knowledge about cooperative learning has increased.