Homeschool Geography Ideas-Making it Fun
Whether you are a teacher or a parent, you will find it far easier to teach kids geography if you make it fun
Here are five ways to achieve that:
Homeschool Geography Ideas Play Board and Card Games
There are many great board and card games available which relate to Geography. Card games like the Borderline series are ideal for teaching students the relative locations of places. Mindware has brought out two Brainbox games on geography - one on world geography and one on US geography. Both get the players to study pictorial clues about a country or state and then to answer questions based on what they can remember. This game is for one or with many children at the same time, and my kids loved it!
Homeschool Geography Ideas Play CD and Online Games
Children love computer games - so this an ideal way to slip in some teaching without them even realizing it. The Carmen Sandiego "Where in the World" and "Where in the USA" games were great favorites with my kids when they were young. They learned about places all over the world without even noticing they were learning.
And of course, you can find a plethora of online games to challenge players of all different levels of geography knowledge. My family loves the ones on the Sporcle website, but if those are too hard, there are plenty of others to choose.
Homeschool Geography Ideas Watch Movies
There is an excellent DVD series made especially for children called "Families of the World." In each DVD two families in a country are visited - one in the city and one in the country. The narration is from one of the children in the family, so children can easily relate to what they are watching. You can also show children feature movies set in other countries. My young daughter and I watched Children of Heaven about a young boy and girl in Iran who have to share a pair of shoes - and it gave her an excellent insight into another culture.
Homeschool Geography Ideas Devise Geography Games
I have made up many games to fit what I am trying to teach. Draw a large world map on a piece of paper, stick it on a wall and play 'Pin the Plane on the Continent.' Or make up Geography Taboo, Geography Pictionary, Geography Jeopardy or Geography Charades. You can tailor-make your questions to fit the lesson you are teaching.
Homeschool Geography Ideas Communicate with children in other countries
Far off places will become more real to kids if they get to know someone living there. Sign up for pen pals so that kids can communicate by letter, email, Skype or even Facebook. Another alternative is to sign up for the Postcard crossings program which organizes a postcard swap between people all over the world. Once you receive a postcard, you could put a tack on a wall map to show where it has come.