Around The World
During the topic of Around The World we look at four countries which contrast to our own in some way. The children love learning about other countries and they always have loads of questions!
At the start of the topic I give each child their own class passport which we fill in after each ‘visit’. They draw the flag for each country and write/draw something they learned on their visit.
Country 1 – Jamaica
Our first country was Jamaica. It’s a country that is different to Ireland for many reasons, but we focused primarily on the weather. As a result of the weather being so different we looked at the foods that grow there which don’t grow in Ireland. It was a good time to introduce the children to Fair Trade. The children enjoyed a taster session of some tropical fruit and we painted some beautiful pictures of Jamaica’s national bird, the hummingbird.
Country 2 – U.S.A.
Our second country visited was the U.S.A. While in the U.S., we focused on landmarks and logos. The children were already familiar with a lot of what they saw when we covered this country and so I linked it to media education in S.P.H.E. We looked at American ‘Pop’ artist Andy Warhol and created our own ‘pop’ art with our hand prints.
Country 3 – Tanzania
After we were finished in the U.S.A, we next landed in Tanzania, again a country very different to Ireland in many ways. In our Tanzanian week we focused on the people who live there and how they speak and look different to people in Ireland. We learned some Swahili and discovered that while the children there might look different, they are still children just like all the children in our class – once again, another good link to S.P.H.E. And let’s not forget the animals! The carpet area is always full of eyes wide open in amazement when we are learning about the animals who live on the Serengeti Plain!
Country 4 – France
Our final country was France, one of our European neighbours. While in France we again looked at the language and learned some words in French; we looked at the currency and linked it to our numeracy by covering money in the same week; we discussed modes of transport available to get to France (and as its so close to home many of the children had stories to tell of their holidays in France). Finally, it wouldn’t be a week in France if it didn’t include croissants so we have to have a taster session of some yummy Cuisine De France products too!
Of course, if you are covering this topic you can choose any country you like – China and Australia were two other favourites I have covered in previous years; both destinations open offer great art projects that you can do with the children. If you need some more ideas, contact me!