When I was a social studies teacher at Roosevelt Junior High I loved and most of my students seemed to enjoy this one assignment. Create your own city. They would have to follow the features of an early Utah settlement but could put whatever they wanted into their city. I also enjoyed watching their creativity as to what they would place in their city, however, I always wanted more from this assignment.
Sim City for iPads is a free app that teachers could use to allow students to create their own city. Tom introduced me to this game, and I have been hooked on it since then.
In this game, you are the mayor of your city. You have city resources to manage and try to build. You have to make sure that your citizens have their needs met, like sewer, fire department, and electricity. Taxes are collected which gives you money to build your city. Which means you need to make sure your citizens are happy, and people are moving into your city.
I could see this being a fun way to help students learn about citizenship in a community, managing resources, you could also discuss current issues. Such as coal power plants or green energy. Overall I think this could be a fun way to teach several social studies standards either as a class or individually.
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