Welcome to Our Town! (Part I)

What is "Welcome to Our Town"?
This town map will serve as an interactive, standards-based bulletin board created by the students featuring an assimilation of many different standards and skills. These standards and skills will be taught through an interdisciplinary unit that addresses academic content standards in Math, Social Studies, and English/Language Arts.

Why is it named Fruehtown?
Under any other circumstance, I would have allowed my students to create their own name for the town. But I happen to be getting married at the end of the month, and my new last name will be Frueh. Seeing as how I'm pretty pumped about it, I decided to name the town after my future last name. 

How do you pronounce Fruehtown?

I know. Someone should have taught his ancestors the phonetic rules for vowel digraphs. But that is neither here nor there. ;-)

Inspiration for this Unit:

This unit was inspired by two things.
1) My students' love for maps. 
2.) My serious disdain for making bulletin boards. Especially the ones in the hallway.

I'm fairly certain that loving bulletin boards is supposed to be a prerequisite for entrance into elementary education program in college, but I seem to have slipped past the sensors. While I'm certainly not devaluing the importance of bulletin boards, I find it to be an aspect of teaching that does not excite me. Especially when they are in the hallway where we do not spend the majority of our school day.

I realize that building an entire interdisciplinary unit around my bulletin board probably seems like a contradiction. Aside from the fact that it will be a great learning tool, here's my additional motivation.  I put it up in March. The students will continue to build upon and learn from it through April and May. That's right, folks. I do not have to think of another idea for a standards-based bulletin board until next school year!

I love how this bulletin board is designed to have a maximum impact on student learning while requiring minimal effort from me to complete the board. The students designed it. They will build every part of it. And they will use it as a learning tool in multiple subject areas.

Win, win.  :-)

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