Why Do Families Around the World Live in Different Kinds of Shelters?

A WebQuest for Kindergarten (Social Science)

Designed by

Sandra Golden

house on stilts 

Introduction | Task | Process | Evaluation | Conclusion | Credits | Teacher Page


Let's go places.  You will be traveling around the world. You will look at homes in every continent.  Tell how the shelters are different.  See how families live in different kinds of shelters in our world.


The Task

With your teachers help, you will look at pictures on the web to see different types of houses from places around the world.  You will choose and draw pictures of houses in cold and hot regions on the earth; you will tell the class about them.  One of your pictures will be in the pages of the class's big book, Where We Live

You will take a virtual tour of different kinds of shelters in regions with land and water or city and farm places.  Then you will select your favorite shelter.  You will put your choice in a classroom graph, "Our Favorite Houses"and dramatize a poem, "Build A House".

You will speak to the class about the different kinds of shelters and read the big book with the class and on your own.  You will keep a journal to write about the different shelters and regions around the world; these shelters will also be placed on a large map.

Be sure to go to these places on the computer:

The Process

Now, you can get started:

           1.  First, you will listen to a story, "My House", by Dorros.
You will tell about your own experiences with making a journey and seeing different kinds of shelters; these are houses or dwellings for family life.  You can tell about your own house.  Then you will say the beginning sound of house and read.

          2.  You will write the uppercase and lowercase Hh and draw your family inside of a picture of a house; you will color all of the pictures.

          3.  You will be assigned a partner to takes turns at the computer to see different kinds of houses around the world.

          4.  Now look at some houses and answer the following questions, as you take turns with your partner operating the computer:  wigwam

          5.  Did all of the houses have the same shape?  Draw these houses in your journal.

          6.  Are these houses the same colors and sizes? Remember to draw them in your journal.

          7.  Can you tell what kinds of materials were used to build these houses?
stone house
wood house
mud house
animal skins
building house with sticks

          8.  You saw a house that was being built with sticks.  Draw this house in your journal.

          9.  Stand, clap, sing, and dramatize this song:

Build A House

(Sung to the tune of "Row, Row, Row Your Boat")

Build, build, build a house,  
With doors and windows, too.
Add a roof to keep it dry,
A home for me and you!

         10.  Go to the computer with your partner.  Look at these houses in a city:
Why do cities need more houses than farms?

house in the city

         11.  This is a house that can be found on a farm.

house on the farm

         12.  Listen to a taped story of "The City Mouse and the Country Mouse".  Think about the houses that you saw in cities and on farms.  Draw five houses and put the city mouse in one of them.  Draw one house for the country mouse; draw it inside the house.

         13.  Along with another group of partners, you and your partner will go to the science center.  One group can build a city and the other group can make a farm house; add other items from the science center for your block houses.

          14.  Look at some houses in hot and cold places:
another hut
tropical house
winter house
house in Canada

                  15.  Draw these houses in your journal.  Label them with the words hot or cold.

          16.  Which houses have more water around or near them in the next pictures. Draw a picture in your journal.
house on stilts
house on stilts

          17.  Look at the "Our Favorite Houses" chart.  Choose a house.  Write your name on a card.  Your teacher will post your card above the row with your choice.  After the class has had a chance to select their own favorites, you will count the cards for each of the houses.  Then you will see which house received the ,most, least, or same amount of votes.  Make a chart like this one in your journal.

          18.  Now take two virtual tours of houses by clicking
virtual tours

          19.  You were able to see many houses. The last part of your journey allowed you to see more of the insides and outside places of different houses.  Now, you are ready to draw your own
favorite house in the activity sheet.

          20.  Dictate four things about your favorite house to your teacher.  Practice reading your favorite house page  to be able to read it to the class in our big book, "Where Would You Live".

          21.  Participate in making a mural of houses with the class.

          22.  Volunteer to help to decorate our house cake.  Then you can eat a piece.





Not Very Good
Pretty Good
Very Good
Following Directions


I did not listen to the directions, so I did not know what to do.

I did not follow the directions.

I was frequently off task.

I followed the directions but I had to be reminded to stay on task. I followed the directions and stayed on task while I was working on my project. I followed all the directions and I helped other students who didn't know what to do
Complete the worksheets We played around instead of working on our project. We could not agree on what we should be doing, so we wasted time.
We could not agree on what we should be doing, so we wasted time.
We worked together on the poem but did not share the responsibility of presenting. We worked, together on the poem and shared the responsibility of presenting.
Tell four different things about your favorite house

I was unable to find the information I was looking for.
I was able to find some of the information needed to complete my poem.
I was able to find most of the information I needed to complete my poem.
I was able to find all the information I needed to complete my poem with help from others.
I was able to find all the information I needed to complete my poem independently.
Read Aloud your page in the big book

I am just beginning to understand the task. My work is incomplete.
I worked on my poem, but only included (2-3) pictures or pieces of information.
I completed (4-6) pieces of information on my poem.
I included all 8 pieces of information.

My pictures were rushed.

I included all 8 pieces of information.

My pictures were carefully detailed.



song and

I was unable to participate in the presentation. I participated in the presentation but could only remember (2-3) pieces of information.
I participated in the presentation and included (4-6) pieces of the poem information.
I participated in the presentation and included (7-8) pieces of the poem information. I participated in the presentation and exhibited confidence in knowledge of all the material presented.


The students have learned that people around the world live in shelters which are houses or dwellings that are not the same.   They know that houses not  the same around the world, because of differences in the following:  Sizes, shapes, and colors; hot and cold regions; areas with little or more water; availability or choices of building materials; and populations and activities of people in farms and cities.

Credits & References

Internet Resources

Stone house
Wood house
Mud house
Building with sticks
Carribean house
Tropical house
Winter house
House in Canada
House on stilts
House on stilts
Virtual tours

Literary Resources

"My House" by Arthur Dorros (Scholastic Inc.)
"Harcourt Horizons:  All About Me

Last updated on November 16, 2003. Based on a template from The WebQuest Page