Summer is almost at an end, and you know what that means! Yes, Back to School season is once again upon us. And to ring in the new school year, we here at Buncee are bringing you ideas and inspiration on ways you can enhance your social studies lessons with Buncee!
Sometimes it can be hard to interest students who might not necessarily like history; but with Buncee it’s easy for students to be creative and really get involved in what they’re learning. Here are 10 ways you can use Buncee to get your school year started off on the right foot!
Idea #1: Create Interactive Maps
One way to use Buncee in your social studies lesson is to have your students make their own maps. With Buncee’s stickers and drawing tools, students can learn about maps and map reading by creating a map of their town, state, country; or for even more fun, designing their own town, island, state, or country!
Idea #2: Create Interactive Timelines
You can also help your students create more interactive timelines by building them in Buncee. It’s one thing to place events in order, but you can really bring the timeline to life by adding pictures, animations, video, and audio to add detail. You could instruct students to make their own timeline, or have the whole class participate. Simply tell each student to submit a slide with a portion of the timeline, and then clip and stitch all their Buncees together and share it with your students. Or, create a Buncee Board and have your students post their section of the timeline to the board!
Idea #3: Document and Analyze Resources
Buncee is a great tool for analyzing history. Have your students use primary sources to really spur their thinking about historical events. By linking websites like the Library of Congress and Biography.com into your students’ history Buncee assignments, you help to bring the past to life and teach your students how to attribute resources to their research work. Check out Leticia Citizen’s presentation at ISTE 2018 to see more!
Idea #4: Bring DBQs to life!
You finally reached the DBQ (Document Based Question) unit of your class and through experience, you know there’ll be students that completely loathe this unit. In fact, some have even gone as far as creating Facebook groups and Reddit topics about it! But, DBQ’s don’t have to be that kind of unit. With Buncee, you can make learning to write responses to DBQ’s much more fun and interactive! It’ll be something they want to do, all while learning to critically think and problem solve at the same time!
When introducing DBQ’s to your students, start off by creating a Buncee filled with various primary resources - such as images and historical text. Instead of just having your students draw up a text analysis in response to the prompt, use Buncee’s audio or video recording features and have them provide their oral reflection of the resources and discuss how they think they connect to one another. Rather than having students dive right into the challenge of writing their text analysis, having students think out loud or orally share their ideas can help them be more comfortable in analyzing information presented to them.
Idea #5: Create Travel Brochures
A really fun project is to use Buncee to create Travel Brochures! Whether you’re studying your community, another state, or a country, students will enjoy creating travel brochures on Buncee for the places they are researching. With over 20,000 graphics and animations in our library, as well as the ability to safely add web images, videos, and links - by creating travel brochures, students will be able to creatively showcase their understanding of the culture and history of any region of their choice.
Idea #6: Visual Thinking to Teach Historical and Current Events
Pictures do speak a thousand words; and we know it's true, sometimes simple imagery can convey an equally, if not more, powerful story than traditional descriptive text!
With Buncee, students don’t always have to associate their history classes with long drawn out pages of detailed information. Try integrating visual learning strategies into your social studies class by encouraging your students to reflect on visual primary sources, such as political cartoons, to share their interpretation of historical (or current) events! As an interactive activity, have your students sift through the editorial section of a newspaper and upload a political cartoon of their choosing. Then, have them research the perspective behind these cartoons and link their findings into the Buncee. Next, have them use Buncee’s audio or video recording functionalities to share their analysis of the cartoon! This gives students time to practice their research skills, report on what they’ve learned, and creatively communicate their analysis of the topic! *As a bonus tip, you can even have them use Buncee to draw their own political cartoon, as well!
Idea #7: Create Engaging Biographies
Traditional biographies aren’t always the most engaging, especially for students that don’t necessarily enjoy history or writing. Try something new by constructing biographies of historical figures in Buncee. Of course you can import pictures and tell their story, but you’re not just limited to text and pictures. Use audio to add in fun facts about their life, pop in a link to a YouTube video of your person speaking. Have your students use their imagination to bring their biographies to life!
Idea #8: Create a Postcard from the Past
If you’re studying a particular time period, it could be hard for students to relate to and understand what life was like back then. Having your students put themselves in the shoes of a person living long ago is a great way to have them learn about the time period. Have them make a Postcard from the Past, where they write a postcard from the perspective of a person living through that time. It could be a notable or famous person, or it could just be a regular person living in the past.
Idea #9: Share Social Posts from Historical Eyes
Similarly, you could have your students make Historical Social Media Posts or Profiles. Using the Buncee creation canvas, have your students create a social media post or profile of a historical figure and have them share important parts of an event from history through the eyes of that historical figure’s social media account! This idea allows your students creatively demonstrate their understanding of historical events - and in ways they are used to in modern days: via social media!
Idea #10: Research and Create Historical Scrapbooks
Another fun idea is to create a Historical period scrapbook: are you studying a particular period in history? Have your students dig deep and find out all that they can from the time. They can include pictures of events, fashion trends, food and commerce from the area, and whatever else you want them to look for. Bring the past to life!
These are just some of the ways in which you can use Buncee to enhance your social studies lessons. Did we miss any? If you have an idea for a social studies lesson using Buncee, be sure to tweet it at us @Buncee, and share it on our FB educator’s group page. Also, be sure to check out our Ways to Enhance Science Lessons With Buncee blog, as many of the ideas listed there can also be applied to social studies lessons. As summer draws to a close, all of us at Buncee wish you and your students an awesome school year!