Pac Man Loves…USA Geography

Yup, he actually does! I knew very little geography going into homeschooling {either I wasn’t taught well or I forgot most of it}. I now know lots and am enjoying learning {or relearning} right alongside of Pac!

I do a lot of our own stuff even though Pac is enrolled in a cyber charter school. One area I have always sorta done my own thing is geography. We do what the school has for us but we do a lot more too!

We just completed our first round of identifying 1 state per day and coloring it in. We do this each morning during our calendar time. Krash participates also and has learned to locate Minnesota, Texas and Maine ;-). Although my favorite was when he located Megazona. My main focus in doing this each morning is to give Pac Man a better grasp on quickly locating and naming all of the states.

We use these printable maps. We staple the blank outlined on on top for the boys to color 1 state per day, and we put the labeled map underneath to check. I also used a set of USA flashcards. The boys took turns each day-one would draw a card and name the state and then other would find and color the state. Obviously we greatly modified for Krash ;-).

This time around I am going in ABC order and using the new PowerPoint show I am working on {it is located in the Members Only section}. I am not done with the entire show {all of the states}, but am linking up in the MO section as I get chunks of it complete! So far I have released “A States” and C & D States.” We started this week and it was a big hit!!!

I am setting up the laptop right in front of our calendar board for our morning group time, with the show ready to go. Here is the detailed order that we are going in {since I know some of you thrive on details}…

  • I begin the PowerPoint at the beginning, which takes us through identifying the capital city, the postal abbreviation, and then the location. This is what that slide looks like at the end {each sentence and then the graphic answer comes up in order so the child can think first before checking the answer}.USA.Alabama (2)
  • When this slide pops up {shown below}, I ask the boys {or one of them} to come up and show me where he thinks the state is. He can then self-correct by pushing the arrow to make the slide animate the state emphasizes with a circle-draw and then the name and abbreviation pops up. They LOVE this and actually hit back to have it animate over and over!IMG_3141
  • Each day we are adding a new state, going in ABC order. I still start the show at the beginning each day though, so we have a building review of the concepts. I obviously don’t expect Krash to pick up on USA geography at 4, but I can imagine he will naturally soak a TON of information in!!!IMG_3114
  • After the slideshow, one boy {they take turns} colors in the state for the day, which is an additional review.IMG_3118
  • On top of our US geography, we have added in Africa this round!!! I am using our country cards and Africa board from Where in the World. Krash chooses a country card, IMG_3232I whisper the name in his ear, he tells Pac Man the name of the country. Pac Man then does his best to remember where it is by looking at the Where in the World board {we have studied Africa in depth in the past so this is a great review for him}. Then Krash tells him the correct {the countries are numbered on the board}. IMG_3234
  • After using the board, the boys then find it on our HUGE foam world map {THIS is our exact map but the price on Amazon is outrageous. We paid $19.99 for it years ago at Lowes-yes the hardware store!}, which now sits in the middle of our schoolroom. I absolutely did not stage this shot, and love it! They were pointing out Gambia in this photo!!!IMG_3123

The total time for all of this is about 10 minutes. It seems like a lot, but it really goes by fast and the boys both enjoy it. As we get into the states, it will obviously take longer as we review each day. We may not continue to review all of the states each day, we’ll see!

Last week the boys had a blast putting our big puzzle together, and then using it as a wrestling mat. Boys will be boys, and I LOVE them.IMG_2827

Wrestling…Geography…it’s all connected, right?