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Instructional Focus Document
Grade 3 Social Studies
TITLE : Unit 03: The Community as a Place SUGGESTED DURATION : 20 days

Unit Overview

Introduction

This unit bundles student expectations that address the use of geographic tools and the human geographic characteristics of places. An understanding of how to use maps and globes as tools is important in the development of spatial reasoning. According to Kastens and Liben (2010), students are not developing adequate map skills; this then hinders their ability to develop spatial orientation, a problem that often follows them into adulthood. Continued development of spatial reasoning is necessary for student success in later social studies courses.

An examination of the human geographic characteristics of places is important for understanding the similarities and differences between communities or places. Human interactions with each other and the environment necessitated the creation of human systems to manage resources, and administer territory. Additionally human interactions facilitated the creation of culture. All communities have political systems, economic systems, and cultures, yet the distinct nature of these institutions vary from place to place. 

Prior to this Unit

Prior to this unit of study, students learned about the celebration of freedom in the United States as a community and about how communities create a cultural heritage manifested in traditions and arts.

During this Unit

During this unit, students study about how to use maps and globes as tools, about the human geographic characteristics of communities, and about the cultural heritage of communities. A comparison of the human geographic characteristics of the local community, Texas, the United States, and other global communities provides students with an understanding of human geographic patterns.

After this Unit

In the next unit, students continue a learning focus on geography by studying about human interaction with the physical environment.

Research

Kastens, A., & Liben, L. (2010).Children's strategies and difficulties while using a map to record locations in an outdoor environment. International Research in Geographical and Environmental Education, 19(4), 315-340.


Maps are created to visualize the spatial world.

  • How do maps reflect and shape perceptions of the world?

Humans have a complex relationship with the environment.

  • What is characteristic of the interactions between humans and the environment?
Unit Understandings
and Questions
Overarching Concepts
and Unit Concepts
Performance Assessment(s)

Maps and globes are tools used to show geographic information.

  • How can the use of directions help us to locate places on a map and a globe?
  • How do map elements like a compass rose, a grid system, and symbols help us to use maps and globes as tools?
  • What would we use the scale for on a map?

Spatial Patterns

  • Location
  • Place
Assessment information provided within the TEKS Resource System are examples that may, or may not, be used by your child’s teacher. In accordance with section 26.006 (2) of the Texas Education Code, "A parent is entitled to review each test administered to the parent’s child after the test is administered." For more information regarding assessments administered to your child, please visit with your child’s teacher.

The human characteristics of a community reflect the lifestyles of the people living there.

  • What is a region?
  • What are human geographic characteristics?
  • What are some examples of human geographic characteristics in the community?
  • What are some examples of human geographic characteristics in Texas?
  • What are some examples of human geographic characteristics in the United States?
  • What are some examples of human geographic characteristics in other world communities?

Spatial Patterns

  • Region/Borders

Cultural Patterns

  • Language
  • Customs/Traditions
Assessment information provided within the TEKS Resource System are examples that may, or may not, be used by your child’s teacher. In accordance with section 26.006 (2) of the Texas Education Code, "A parent is entitled to review each test administered to the parent’s child after the test is administered." For more information regarding assessments administered to your child, please visit with your child’s teacher.

MISCONCEPTIONS / UNDERDEVELOPED CONCEPTS

  • Students often understand that cardinal and intermediate directions are fixed on a map, yet they do not understand how those directions apply in the real world. For example, students often think that north is in front of them, south is behind them, west is on the left and east is on the right. Hands-on experiences with maps and compasses illustrating how cardinal and intermediate directions do not change position are crucial to the development of spatial reasoning.

Unit Vocabulary

map – a drawing of the earth’s surface on a flat paper
globe – a model of the earth that showsgeographic information
compass rose – a symbol used on maps to show directions
human geographic characteristics – the qualities that describe the people living in a place 

Related Vocabulary

  •  place
  •  
  •  
Unit Assessment Items System Resources

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Unit Assessment Items that have been published by your district may be accessed through Search All Components in the District Resources tab. Assessment items may also be found using the Assessment Center if your district has granted access to that tool.

System Resources may be accessed through Search All Components in the District Resources Tab.


TAUGHT DIRECTLY TEKS

TEKS intended to be explicitly taught in this unit.

TEKS/SE Legend:

  • Knowledge and Skills Statements (TEKS) identified by TEA are in italicized, bolded, black text.
  • Student Expectations (TEKS) identified by TEA are in bolded, black text.
  • Portions of the Student Expectations (TEKS) that are not included in this unit but are taught in previous or future units are indicated by a strike-through.

Specificity Legend:

  • Supporting information / clarifications (specificity) written by TEKS Resource System are in blue text.
TEKS# SE# TEKS SPECIFICITY
3 Geography.
3.4 Geography. The student understands how humans adapt to variations in the physical environment. The student is expected to:
3.4E Identify and compare the human characteristics of various regions.

Identify, Compare

HUMAN CHARACTERISTICS OF REGIONS

Including, but not limited to:

  • Physical geographic regions in the United States may include the Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, Southwest, and West.
  • Culture regions of the world may include USA/Canada, Latin America, Europe, Russia, Southwest Asia and North Africa, South Asia, East Asia, Australia, and Oceania
  • Rural/urban regions
  • Human Characteristics
    • Cultural – language, religion, daily life, food, entertainment, types of clothing, types of homes
    • Economic – occupations, important resources
    • Political – elections, types of governments

Human characteristics –refers to human activities related to interaction with the physical environment and each other, including cultural activities, economic activities, and political activities   


Regions – areas of the Earth's surface which have similar physical or human characteristics distinctive from the characteristics of another region

3.5 Geography. The student understands the concepts of location, distance, and direction on maps and globes. The student is expected to:
3.5A Use cardinal and intermediate directions to locate places on maps and globes such as the Rocky Mountains, the Mississippi River, and Austin, Texas, in relation to the local community.

Use

CARDINAL AND INTERMEDIATE DIRECTIONS TO LOCATE PLACES ON MAP AND GLOBES

Including, but not limited to:

  • Four Cardinal Directions – north, south, east, and west are the cardinal directions because these are the primary points on the compass.
  • Intermediate Directions – intermediate directions are the directions mid-way between the cardinal points on a compass. Intermediate directions are southwest, southeast, northwest, and northeast.
  • Places to  locate in relation to the local community:
    • Rocky Mountains
    • Mississippi River
    • Austin, Texas
3.5B Use a scale to determine the distance between places on maps and globes.

Use

MAP SCALE TO DETERMINE DISTANCE BETWEEN PLACES

Including, but not limited to:

  • Scale – an indication of the relationship between the distances on a map, chart, or plan and the corresponding actual distances. Examples include: "1 inch equals 1 mile" or "1:25" or a line marked at intervals equal to 1 mile, 5 miles, etc. Scale can also mean the size of an area being studied. For example, a small-scale study looks at conditions in one place, whereas a large-scale study looks at conditions in a larger region.
  • Distance between the local community and the Rocky Mountains, Mississippi River, Austin, Washington, D.C., Gulf of Mexico, Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean
3.5C Identify and use the compass rose, grid system, and symbols to locate places on maps and globes.

Identify, Use

MAP ELEMENTS TO LOCATE PLACES ON A MAP AND/OR GLOBE

Including, but not limited to:

  • Compass rose – a circle or similar design that includes graduated degrees or quarter points (intermediate directions), printed on a chart or map for reference. The compass rose usually shows both magnetic and true directions. A compass rose shows the orientation of a map on Earth. Geographers use a compass rose or the north arrow when drawing maps. 
  • Grid system – a network of horizontal and vertical lines used to locate points on a map or a chart by means of coordinates. The grid system often used on state highway maps consists of columns and rows labeled with letters and numbers. A place identified as G25 in the index is found at the intersection of "column" G and "row" 25 (or vice versa). Latitude and longitude is the primary grid system used on maps. 
  • Map symbols – symbols may be simple drawings, letters, and shortened words, colored shapes which save space and make it easier to read a map. Usually included in the map’s legend.
3.5D Create and interpret maps of places and regions that contain map elements, including a title, compass rose, legend, scale, and grid system.

Create, Interpret

MAPS OF PLACES AND REGIONS

Including, but not limited to:

  • Create maps of places and regions containing a title, compass rose, legend, scale and grid system
    • Examples of maps of places to be created: local community, regions of Texas, regions of the U.S.
  • Interpret maps of places and regions containing a title, compass rose, legend, scale, and grid system
    • Examples of maps of places to be interpreted: local community, Texas, U.S.
  • Include map elements
    • Title
    • Compass rose (orientation)
    • Legend – an explanatory list of the symbols appearing on a chart or map is a legend. Sometimes, this is called a key because it is key to understanding what a map is saying.
    • Scale
    • Grid system
3 Social studies skills.
3.17 Social studies skills. The student applies critical-thinking skills to organize and use information acquired from a variety of valid sources, including electronic technology. The student is expected to:
3.17A Research information, including historical and current events, and geographic data, about the community and world, using a variety of valid print, oral, visual, and Internet resources.

Research

INFORMATION ABOUT THE COMMUNITY AND WORLD USING A VARIETY OF SOURCES

Including, but not limited to:

  • Print sources (e.g., newspapers, books, and periodicals)
  • Oral sources (e.g., conversations, interviews)
  • Visual sources (e.g., maps, pictures, photographs, charts and graphs, film documentaries, and news reports)
  • Internet sources (e.g., internet searches, databases)
3.17E Interpret and create visuals, including graphs, charts, tables, timelines, illustrations, and maps.

Interpret, Create

VISUALS

Including, but not limited to:

  • Graphs
  • Charts
  • Tables
  • Timelines
  • Illustrations
  • Maps
3.18 Social studies skills. The student communicates in written, oral, and visual forms. The student is expected to:
3.18B Use technology to create written and visual material such as stories, poems, pictures, maps, and graphic organizers to express ideas.

Use

TECHNOLOGY

Including, but not limited to:

  • Technology
  • Examples: Word, PowerPoint, online databases, search engines, web pages

Create

WRITTEN AND VISUAL MATERIAL TO EXPRESS IDEAS

Including, but not limited to:

  • Written Material
    • Stories
    • Poems
    • Graphic organizers
  • Visual Material
    • Pictures
    • Maps
  • Graphic organizers
3.18C Use standard grammar, spelling, sentence structure, and punctuation.

Use

WRITTEN SKILLS TO COMMUNICATE

Including, but not limited to:

  • Standard grammar
  • Spelling
  • Sentence structure
  • Punctuation
The English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS), as required by 19 Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 74, Subchapter A, §74.4, outline English language proficiency level descriptors and student expectations for English language learners (ELLs). School districts are required to implement ELPS as an integral part of each subject in the required curriculum.

School districts shall provide instruction in the knowledge and skills of the foundation and enrichment curriculum in a manner that is linguistically accommodated commensurate with the student’s levels of English language proficiency to ensure that the student learns the knowledge and skills in the required curriculum.


School districts shall provide content-based instruction including the cross-curricular second language acquisition essential knowledge and skills in subsection (c) of the ELPS in a manner that is linguistically accommodated to help the student acquire English language proficiency.

http://ritter.tea.state.tx.us/rules/tac/chapter074/ch074a.html#74.4 


Choose appropriate ELPS to support instruction.

ELPS# Subsection C: Cross-curricular second language acquisition essential knowledge and skills.
Click here to collapse or expand this section.
ELPS.c.1 The ELL uses language learning strategies to develop an awareness of his or her own learning processes in all content areas. In order for the ELL to meet grade-level learning expectations across the foundation and enrichment curriculum, all instruction delivered in English must be linguistically accommodated (communicated, sequenced, and scaffolded) commensurate with the student's level of English language proficiency. The student is expected to:
ELPS.c.1A use prior knowledge and experiences to understand meanings in English
ELPS.c.1B monitor oral and written language production and employ self-corrective techniques or other resources
ELPS.c.1C use strategic learning techniques such as concept mapping, drawing, memorizing, comparing, contrasting, and reviewing to acquire basic and grade-level vocabulary
ELPS.c.1D speak using learning strategies such as requesting assistance, employing non-verbal cues, and using synonyms and circumlocution (conveying ideas by defining or describing when exact English words are not known)
ELPS.c.1E internalize new basic and academic language by using and reusing it in meaningful ways in speaking and writing activities that build concept and language attainment
ELPS.c.1F use accessible language and learn new and essential language in the process
ELPS.c.1G demonstrate an increasing ability to distinguish between formal and informal English and an increasing knowledge of when to use each one commensurate with grade-level learning expectations
ELPS.c.1H develop and expand repertoire of learning strategies such as reasoning inductively or deductively, looking for patterns in language, and analyzing sayings and expressions commensurate with grade-level learning expectations.
ELPS.c.2 The ELL listens to a variety of speakers including teachers, peers, and electronic media to gain an increasing level of comprehension of newly acquired language in all content areas. ELLs may be at the beginning, intermediate, advanced, or advanced high stage of English language acquisition in listening. In order for the ELL to meet grade-level learning expectations across the foundation and enrichment curriculum, all instruction delivered in English must be linguistically accommodated (communicated, sequenced, and scaffolded) commensurate with the student's level of English language proficiency. The student is expected to:
ELPS.c.2A distinguish sounds and intonation patterns of English with increasing ease
ELPS.c.2B recognize elements of the English sound system in newly acquired vocabulary such as long and short vowels, silent letters, and consonant clusters
ELPS.c.2C learn new language structures, expressions, and basic and academic vocabulary heard during classroom instruction and interactions
ELPS.c.2D monitor understanding of spoken language during classroom instruction and interactions and seek clarification as needed
ELPS.c.2E use visual, contextual, and linguistic support to enhance and confirm understanding of increasingly complex and elaborated spoken language
ELPS.c.2F listen to and derive meaning from a variety of media such as audio tape, video, DVD, and CD ROM to build and reinforce concept and language attainment
ELPS.c.2G understand the general meaning, main points, and important details of spoken language ranging from situations in which topics, language, and contexts are familiar to unfamiliar
ELPS.c.2H understand implicit ideas and information in increasingly complex spoken language commensurate with grade-level learning expectations
ELPS.c.2I demonstrate listening comprehension of increasingly complex spoken English by following directions, retelling or summarizing spoken messages, responding to questions and requests, collaborating with peers, and taking notes commensurate with content and grade-level needs.
ELPS.c.3 The ELL speaks in a variety of modes for a variety of purposes with an awareness of different language registers (formal/informal) using vocabulary with increasing fluency and accuracy in language arts and all content areas. ELLs may be at the beginning, intermediate, advanced, or advanced high stage of English language acquisition in speaking. In order for the ELL to meet grade-level learning expectations across the foundation and enrichment curriculum, all instruction delivered in English must be linguistically accommodated (communicated, sequenced, and scaffolded) commensurate with the student's level of English language proficiency. The student is expected to:
ELPS.c.3A practice producing sounds of newly acquired vocabulary such as long and short vowels, silent letters, and consonant clusters to pronounce English words in a manner that is increasingly comprehensible
ELPS.c.3B expand and internalize initial English vocabulary by learning and using high-frequency English words necessary for identifying and describing people, places, and objects, by retelling simple stories and basic information represented or supported by pictures, and by learning and using routine language needed for classroom communication
ELPS.c.3C speak using a variety of grammatical structures, sentence lengths, sentence types, and connecting words with increasing accuracy and ease as more English is acquired
ELPS.c.3D speak using grade-level content area vocabulary in context to internalize new English words and build academic language proficiency
ELPS.c.3E share information in cooperative learning interactions
ELPS.c.3F ask and give information ranging from using a very limited bank of high-frequency, high-need, concrete vocabulary, including key words and expressions needed for basic communication in academic and social contexts, to using abstract and content-based vocabulary during extended speaking assignments
ELPS.c.3G express opinions, ideas, and feelings ranging from communicating single words and short phrases to participating in extended discussions on a variety of social and grade-appropriate academic topics
ELPS.c.3H narrate, describe, and explain with increasing specificity and detail as more English is acquired
ELPS.c.3I adapt spoken language appropriately for formal and informal purposes
ELPS.c.3J respond orally to information presented in a wide variety of print, electronic, audio, and visual media to build and reinforce concept and language attainment.
ELPS.c.4 The ELL reads a variety of texts for a variety of purposes with an increasing level of comprehension in all content areas. ELLs may be at the beginning, intermediate, advanced, or advanced high stage of English language acquisition in reading. In order for the ELL to meet grade-level learning expectations across the foundation and enrichment curriculum, all instruction delivered in English must be linguistically accommodated (communicated, sequenced, and scaffolded) commensurate with the student's level of English language proficiency. For Kindergarten and Grade 1, certain of these student expectations apply to text read aloud for students not yet at the stage of decoding written text. The student is expected to:
ELPS.c.4A learn relationships between sounds and letters of the English language and decode (sound out) words using a combination of skills such as recognizing sound-letter relationships and identifying cognates, affixes, roots, and base words
ELPS.c.4B recognize directionality of English reading such as left to right and top to bottom
ELPS.c.4C develop basic sight vocabulary, derive meaning of environmental print, and comprehend English vocabulary and language structures used routinely in written classroom materials
ELPS.c.4D use prereading supports such as graphic organizers, illustrations, and pretaught topic-related vocabulary and other prereading activities to enhance comprehension of written text
ELPS.c.4E read linguistically accommodated content area material with a decreasing need for linguistic accommodations as more English is learned
ELPS.c.4F use visual and contextual support and support from peers and teachers to read grade-appropriate content area text, enhance and confirm understanding, and develop vocabulary, grasp of language structures, and background knowledge needed to comprehend increasingly challenging language
ELPS.c.4G demonstrate comprehension of increasingly complex English by participating in shared reading, retelling or summarizing material, responding to questions, and taking notes commensurate with content area and grade level needs
ELPS.c.4H read silently with increasing ease and comprehension for longer periods
ELPS.c.4I demonstrate English comprehension and expand reading skills by employing basic reading skills such as demonstrating understanding of supporting ideas and details in text and graphic sources, summarizing text, and distinguishing main ideas from details commensurate with content area needs
ELPS.c.4J demonstrate English comprehension and expand reading skills by employing inferential skills such as predicting, making connections between ideas, drawing inferences and conclusions from text and graphic sources, and finding supporting text evidence commensurate with content area needs
ELPS.c.4K demonstrate English comprehension and expand reading skills by employing analytical skills such as evaluating written information and performing critical analyses commensurate with content area and grade-level needs.
ELPS.c.5 The ELL writes in a variety of forms with increasing accuracy to effectively address a specific purpose and audience in all content areas. ELLs may be at the beginning, intermediate, advanced, or advanced high stage of English language acquisition in writing. In order for the ELL to meet grade-level learning expectations across foundation and enrichment curriculum, all instruction delivered in English must be linguistically accommodated (communicated, sequenced, and scaffolded) commensurate with the student's level of English language proficiency. For Kindergarten and Grade 1, certain of these student expectations do not apply until the student has reached the stage of generating original written text using a standard writing system. The student is expected to:
ELPS.c.5A learn relationships between sounds and letters of the English language to represent sounds when writing in English
ELPS.c.5B write using newly acquired basic vocabulary and content-based grade-level vocabulary
ELPS.c.5C spell familiar English words with increasing accuracy, and employ English spelling patterns and rules with increasing accuracy as more English is acquired
ELPS.c.5D edit writing for standard grammar and usage, including subject-verb agreement, pronoun agreement, and appropriate verb tenses commensurate with grade-level expectations as more English is acquired
ELPS.c.5E employ increasingly complex grammatical structures in content area writing commensurate with grade-level expectations, such as:
ELPS.c.5F write using a variety of grade-appropriate sentence lengths, patterns, and connecting words to combine phrases, clauses, and sentences in increasingly accurate ways as more English is acquired
ELPS.c.5G narrate, describe, and explain with increasing specificity and detail to fulfill content area writing needs as more English is acquired.
Last Updated 05/23/2018
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