In Social Studies, second graders have been studying the three main types of communities: urban, suburban and rural. To begin, students learned about the attributes that distinguish these communities from one another – noting urban areas have tall buildings, suburban spaces have many houses, and rural communities have lots of open space. When students described their own surroundings in New York City, they realized they were identifying the characteristics of an urban community. The following week, second graders drew illustrations of what they've learned, adding in a written description of what they like and dislike about living in this particular type of community.
As a part of this unit, students also played a cooperative board game called Community, which asks players to organize a town and its traffic flow in a way that connects home with the most important parts of a town, including school, stores, parks, emergency services, and more. As second grade teacher Lisa Gilbert writes, "This game requires team work, good communication, and strong spatial reasoning. It is a perfect game to warm [students] up for our next big Social Studies unit: mapping."