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Building Our Community


English Language Arts (NYS P-12 Common Core)

Grade Levels

Elementary, 2nd Grade, 3rd Grade, 4th Grade


  • Rubrics are used to evaluate group participation and completed project.
  • Teacher evaluates student portfolio of "community work."


Tricia Dosiek, Peru Central School District


3-5 weeks


Students will learn how to manage information through the reinforcement of basic skills.

Students explore career interests and choices in a "What do I want to be when I grow up?" activity. A social studies unit on communities intertwines career choices with a hands-on project of building a community with job sites. To connect the school-based activity to the real career world, people in the career choice areas are invited to the classroom to be interviewed. A tour of the community, by the students, is open to the school.

  • Students brainstorm career choices, choose a career they would like to have as an adult, and draw pictures of themselves engaged in the career, adding descriptive text.
  • Students study the different parts of a community, identify the businesses found in the community, and build a model community (3-D interactive), including job sites for their listed careers.
  • To gain awareness of their chosen career and the skills necessary to be successful, guest speakers (representing each career) visit the classroom. Students interview and present the information they gained.
  • Students conduct "tours" of their community.


  • Cardboard for community base- 6' x 8'
  • Small boxes of different sizes, paint, landscaping extras
  • Poster paper
  • Interview form


  • Unit addresses the needs of different learning styles.
  • Use of cooperative groups is encouraged. Students with disabilities can be partnered with a peer mentor.
  • Community building can be used as a home-school connecting activity, encouraging student to visit career sites outside of school.


Dosiek, Tricia. "Building Our Community." In Career Development and Occupational Studies (CDOS) Resource Guide with Core Curriculum. New York State Department of Education, 63.

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