Grade 1 Culture

West Haven Public Schools 

Unit Planning Organizer

Revised July 2011

Subject: Social Studies                                          

Grade: First Grade

Unit: Culture                                           

Pacing: Ongoing throughout the year

Essential Question:

What makes you and your family different from others?

Big Idea:

There are many cultures in our community.

CT State Standards (includes West Haven’s “Priority” GLES’s in BOLD and “Supporting” Standards)


1.13.1 Identify cultural characteristics of self and family.


2.1.1 Access information from non print materials with assistance.

2.1.2 Gather information from listening to and reading nonfiction texts.

2.4 Participate in classroom discussions.

2.5 Create and share in class art work on a social studies topic.

3.1 Describe two different sides/points of view of one event

3.2 Show awareness that people’s feelings and views can change over time.




“Unwrapped” Concepts and Skills, and Bloom Levels (BL)


Concepts(Need to Know)

Skills(Able to Do)




There are different types of cultures that have unique characteristics such as:


There are different types of cultures that have unique characteristics such as Language, Traditions, Foods, Religions and Holidays.


Cultural characteristics of individual children in class can be acknowledged as appropriate.


Elements of culture are explored through different holidays.


For Christmas, the children in school experience many traditions such as Santa, Christmas Trees, Ornaments, Stockings, Candy Canes, Christmas cookies, Holiday music and stories, decorations and the Joy of Giving.


For Hanukah, Kwanza, Ramadan and such, cultures can also be acknowledged as appropriate.


For Valentine’s Day children in school exchange cards with each other. Friendship and kindness are reinforced.


For Easter children in school learn about the Easter Bunny. Some communities have egg hunts and families gather for a feast.




This unit can be enriched through the following Scott Foresman stories:

A Big Job/Sweet Potato Pie Unit 2

Culture, Family Ancestry

Yes, We Want Some Too Unit 3


My Buddy Stan/Biscuit   Unit 3

Home, Culture

My Buddy Stan/Biscuit

Home, Culture











Not given to first grade students at this time.



Instructional Planning

Suggested Resources/Materials:

Big and/or Small Books

Cultural pictures, either individual pictures or pictures within books

Student created art activities (Self Portrait, Share traditions from families - optional)

Chart Paper














Suggested Research-based Effective Instructional Strategies:



Vocabulary/Word Wall


Interdisciplinary Connections