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This mapping lesson makes students aware of their surroundings at school and at home


Social Studies  


K, 1, 2  

Title – My School
By – Dana
Primary Subject – Social Studies
Grade Level – K-2

Lesson Summary:

  • Young children need to understand his/her surroundings, knowing that, it is important for the young children of your classroom to know the surroundings of their school.
  • In this lesson, the teacher will teach the students about their school surroundings by making a map of the school.

Targeted State Content Standards:

    Standard K-5:

      The student will demonstrate an understanding of his or her surroundings. Indicators

    • K-5.1 Identify the location of school, home, neighborhood, community, city/town, and state on a map. (G)
    • K-5.2 Provide examples of personal connections to places, including immediate surroundings, home, school, and neighborhood. (G)
    • K-5.3 Construct a simple map. (G)
    • K-5.4 Recognize natural features of the environment, including mountains and bodies of water, through pictures, literature, and models. (G)

Student Objectives/Learning Goals:

  • The students will be able to identify on a map and physically locate different areas in their school.
  • The students will be able to understand his/her surroundings.
  • The students will be able to correctly label a map.


    Before the lesson the teacher will prepare a few different things.

    • The teacher will locate a blank map of the school building in order to label and color it with the students.
    • The teacher will print off enough copies for the students, as well as scan one to the computer in order to use the SmartBoard to project the map for the students to use as a visual.
    • The teacher will pre-cut (color coded) construction paper and pre-label enough signs to place on different markings in the school, i.e. bathrooms (boys and girls), water fountains, library, music room, art room, gym, etc.
    • The teacher will locate a ball, paintbrush, book, and music note symbol icons, print them, cut them out, and place one of each symbol in a Ziploc bag for each student to have.
  1. The teacher projects the blank map on the SmartBoard.
  2. Begin the lesson with a question, “Does anyone know what your surroundings are?” Converse with the students about their surroundings in the school. Show the map of the school and ask if anyone knows what it is?
  3. Explain that it is a map and tell the students that they will be making one so that they can become familiar with their surroundings while in the school.
  4. The teacher will pass out a blank map, the same one that is on the SmartBoard, as well as the symbols that have been made, to each student so that the students can make a map just like the one on the SmartBoard.
  5. The teacher will use the SmartBoard markers to begin to label things as the students begin to label their own personal maps.
    •   The red marker may denote a girl’s bathroom.
    •   A blue marker will denote the boy’s bathroom.
    •   Yellow will denote the water fountains, a music note (symbol) will denote the music room, a ball (symbol) will denote the gym, a book (symbol) will denote the library and a paintbrush (symbol) will denote the art room.
    •   Lastly, the color green will denote the main office.
  6. After each student has completed their maps, the teacher explains that they are going to go on a tour of the school to physically locate the objects that they have labeled on their maps.
  7. The teacher lines up the students and they continue around the school locating the designated objects. When they find an object, they will label it. (The teacher will place the already pre-cut and pre-labeled construction paper on the bathroom door.) After the items have been labeled the students will come back to the classroom.
  8. The teacher will send home a piece of paper and tell the students to make a map of their homes.

Approximate Time Needed:

    35-45 minutes

Materials and Resources:

      Printed Materials:

        The blank map of the school.


        SmartBoard, construction paper, icons (ball, music note, book, and paintbrush), blank maps, crayons.

Student Assessment:

  • The teacher can compare the maps that the students made while the teacher was making hers on the SmartBoard.
  • Also, when the students bring their maps back from home, the teacher can individually ask each student about the different icons and colors on their map to see if the students understand the concept of “understanding their surroundings.”
  • The teacher may use a checklist to check off major areas that should be located on their house list, such as bathroom, kitchen, and bedroom.

E-Mail Dana !

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