Tools of the Trade
Art and Social Studies Activity
In this activity, children create and then play a game similar to "Memory," which encourages them to recall what they have learned about different occupations and the related tools.
WHAT YOU NEED
- Reference materials with information about a variety of occupations
- 4" x 6" index cards, or pieces of this size cut from poster board or oaktag (enough for three or four sets of 10 each)
- Art materials
- Paste or glue
- Rules for playing "Memory"
WHAT TO DO
- In preparation for making their game cards, brainstorm with the class several occupations. To stimulate children's thinking, mention different businesses or locations in the community and ask what workers they've observed there. For example, children may have seen cashiers at a store, carpenters at a construction site, or firefighters at the fire station.
- Ask children to name at least one tool related to each occupation. For
example, a cashier's tool might be a cash register, a carpenter's a hammer, and a firefighter's a ladder.
- Divide the class into small groups or pairs, explaining that each group will
brainstorm a list and research as least 10 occupations and one tool for each.
- Ask group members to make a pair of cards for each occupation on their list by doing the following:
- Print the name of the occupation across the top of the card.
- Below the name, draw a picture of the tool chosen to represent that occupation.
(Some children may find it easier to draw the tool on a piece of drawing paper,
cut it out, and paste it on the card.)
- Make a duplicate of the first card.
Stress that the card pairs should look as much alike as possible. That is, if
children put a hammer on a card labeled "carpenter," the other
carpenter card should have the same word and picture.
- Distribute and discuss the rules for playing the game "Memory."
After a team has played the game a few times, it can swap its set of cards with
another team. For an added memory challenge, combine two sets of cards and
encourage small groups to play the game with 20 cards.
Use the cards to initiate a discussion about what different products and
services these workers provide. Ask children to state what each worker does
to help the community. For example, "A carpenter is a builder of new
things." or "A carpenter fixes something broken." Write the ideas on the board or on a
large piece of paper in the form of a poem.
Have children look through magazines and newspapers for pictures of workers
(especially those they have researched). Create a bulletin board of workers and
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