Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

M.S. in Teaching


Interdisciplinary and Inclusive Education


College of Education

First Advisor

Hespe, David


Social sciences--Study and teaching (Elementary)--New Jersey; Third grade (Education)--New Jersey


Elementary Education and Teaching


The purposes of this study were to (a) explore Social Studies as it takes place in a third grade classroom at an elementary school in Southern New Jersey and (b) to implement a Social Studies unit using an alternative instructional strategy and determine whether this method is more favorable among students as compared to the traditional teaching method. The researcher observed the cooperating teacher delivering Social Studies lessons, took field notes, recorded her thoughts in a teacher research journal, interviewed four teachers, interviewed students in the cooperating classroom, and implemented a Social Studies unit using scripted plays as an alternative instructional strategy. The researcher found that even though the teachers felt their traditional Social Studies lessons were sufficient and effective, students lacked interest in the lessons using the textbook. Using plays as an alternative instructional strategy increased student interest in Social Studies dramatically. Students were excited about the lessons and a majority of students found it easier to remember the content when using plays as an instructional tool.