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My Perfect Home

My perfect home 1
My perfect home 2
My perfect home 3

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School(s): South Hill Elementary
Grade(s): Fourth Grade
Subject(s): Social Studies, Reading, Writing, Art

Essential Question(s)

What are distinctive geographic features of  Ithaca, New York State and the US? 
What is valuable to us about the place where we live?
Case Study At A Glance

Students explored themes of geography through the lens of criteria that is valuable to themselves. A shared study of New York State paralleled student’s research of another state of their choice, to explore physical features, geographic landscape, and cultural resources. Student research, informational writing, and artistic representations culminated in a state convention to teach others about “My Perfect Home.”
Standards Addressed/Long Term Learning Targets
  • Determine the main idea of a text and explain how it is supported by key details; summarize the text.  
  • Conduct short research projects that build knowledge through investigation of different aspects of a topic.
  • Recall relevant information from experiences or gather relevant information from print and digital
Social Studies
  • Use location terms and geographic representations (maps and models) to describe where places are in relation to each other, to describe connections between places, and to evaluate the benefits of particular places for purposeful activities.
  • Physical and thematic maps can be used to explore New York State’s diverse geography.
  • New York State can be represented using a political map that shows cities, capitals, and boundaries.

Bruce Stoff, Ithaca/Tompkins Convention and Visitors Bureau
Service Learning

State Convention, educating South Hill school community and families.


Anchor texts

Hello USA State books series
Supplemental texts

New York’s Land and Natural Resources, Daniel R. Faust and Amelie von Zumbusch (e-book)
True Flix (digital resource)