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3rd Grade Integrated Unit: Culture

Additional Core Ties

Health Education - 3rd Grade
Standard 3 Objective 2

Health Education - 3rd Grade
Standard 6 Objective 1

Time Frame

10 class periods of 30 minutes each

Group Size

Small Groups

Life Skills

  • Thinking & Reasoning
  • Communication
  • Social & Civic Responsibility


Adrienne Kennett
Sarah Thompson


A multidisciplinary unit that explores the concept of culture with an emphasis on the indigenous people of South America.


Chart paper, counters, map/globe, markers, pencils, task, cards, student computers, writing notebook

Background for Teachers


This an integrated social studies unit intended to be used in learning centers. Teachers should explore the websites used in the technology centers and task cards prior to implementing the unit.

Student Prior Knowledge

Students prior knowledge should be as follows:

Social Studies: Students should have basic mapping skills to use in locating cultural regions.

Health: Students need to know the food pyramid.

Language Arts: Students will need to have basic note taking skills, how to compare and constrast two concepts using a venn diagram and how to compare two concepts using a T-chart.

Math: Students will need to know multiplication and fractions.

Technology: Students will need to know how to access the internet and search using a given URL. They will also need to know Microsoft Photo Story 3.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of this unit students will have a strong understanding of the concept of culture in general, as well as an in depth understanding of the unique cultures found in South America. Students will also acquire knowledge in division, nutrition, and structual analysis.

Instructional Procedures



Too Many Tamales—Tamale Story Map

Materials:Computer with Internet connection, Tamale Story Map, Social Studies journal

Activity: The students will begin this activity by brainstorming the ingredients and steps they believe are needed to make tamales. Second, they will record their ideas in a journal. The students will then use the internet, choosing from two possible sites, to find a recipe for making tamales at home. Finally, they will record the steps for making the tamales on a story map chart to assure accuracy in recording the steps in order.

Peru Photo Story

Materials: Computer with internet connection

Activity: The students will be creating a Photo Story of Peru. They will acquire the images for their story using the Culture Grams website. Each image will need to include a text description or recorded narration. Each story will be saved on a class flash drive to be shared at a later time.

Diet of the Incas

Materials: The students will need the Inca Foods worksheet and access to the computer.

Activity: The students will first read a short description about the foods Inca ate. The students will, using the food list provided on the worksheet, make a one day menu for an Inca. Following this the students will plan a lunch menu and use a nutrition web site look up the number of calories for each food in their lunch menu. They will compare the typical Inca calorie count with their own lunch calorie count.

Latin and Greek Root Words/Prefixes and Suffixes

Materials: Computer with internet connection, worksheets, pencils, glue, scissors, classroom books.


Students will explore three websites to learn about Latin and Greek root words and the way that they have shaped the English language. Students will also learn about prefixes and suffixes. Students will then complete three worksheets to demonstrate their knowledge of prefixes and suffixes. After completing the worksheets, students will use classroom books to go on a word hunt where they will search for words with prefixes and suffixes.

Strategies for Diverse Learners

Students will be placed in heterogeneous groups to provide access for all students to each activity. In addition, individually determined modifications will be made for students that will allow them to complete the activities at their ability level. These modifications will include shortening (for struggling students) or lengthening (for accelerated students) the number of problems to complete, the length of written responses, and/or the time allowed to complete assignments. In addition, students who are progressing through the assignments quickly will be allowed to research information on a South American country of choice and share their research with the class.


The Great Kapook Tree by Lynn Cherry, Too Many Tamales by Gary Soto, Verdi by Janell Cannon


Created: 07/13/2006
Updated: 02/05/2018