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When you hear “literacy” – I am sure you think of letter identification, phonics, and reading instruction. What about students who need more explicit FUNCTIONAL instruction? Literacy can take on an entirely new meaning. It can often include helping our students become literate in the community. We need to teach community signs and symbols explicitly as an evidence based practice for special education classrooms (Bates, Cuvo, Miner, & Korabek, 2001).
While teaching community and safety signs is best done in its natural setting, we also need activities and lessons to teach in the classroom, too! That’s why I created one of my favorite products, the Community Signs Interactive Bulletin Board. Don’t let the title fool you, it can be, and is, so much more than a bulletin board!
What’s Included in this Product?
This product includes 30 of the most commonly used community signs depicted in both clip art and real photographs. I love using the real photos for more generalization. They are perfect for creating a bulletin board that’s not only attractive, but interactive, and serves a meaningful purpose to any wall space! Students can match pictures, label the signs, or both! To make a complete bulletin board, there are headers included. Which I love printing them on Astrobrights paper for an extra pop of color !
Print Settings Make Materials Possible!
I have a fun idea for you. You can use the magic of your printer settings to turn all of these visuals into smaller, individual work tasks. In your printer settings, you can choose “multiple pages on one” which will allow the visuals to be printed smaller. They will be on one page rather than the larger versions that are more appropriate for the size of a bulletin board.
I recorded a video to show you how I do this in Adobe.
Once you have the smaller pieces, you can use them to create activities. I have made file folders, flash cards, for instance! I personally have loved having matching tasks where students match the clip art picture to the photograph, and file folder activities where students label each sign. In other words, these are great for independent work systems. You can read more about independent work systems here.
Some More Ideas for Teaching Community Signs with Materials!
You can also create labeling clip cards if you cut off the name of the sign and attach it to a clothespin! This can create another way to work on these skills and tackle fine motor at the same time! Anytime I can be more efficient and use materials in multiple ways I am all for it!
Matching, identifying, and labeling community signs in the classroom are essential skills for students. I feel that this is a great way to start working on this concept in your classroom. The ultimate goal is that you will be taking them out in the community one day. How cool will it be when they can tell you they see a stop sign because you have targeted this skill before? This versatile product is the perfect way to get started!
Click the image to find this product in my TPT store if you are ready to teach essential life skills!
Here is a video I did on my Instagram stories about using this as a independent task in my classroom! If you’d like you can follow me on Instagram here!