Teaching Textbooks

Continents Fact Files Printable – Geography Printables

continent-fact-files-and-flash-cards-from-homeschool-creations_edited-1 

This year Kaleb and I have been wandering around the world via books, Little Passports, and various other things we come across in our travels. We have a slew of resources and to go along with a few of our books, I put together some printables where we could track important information related to the countries. 

continent-fact-files-printables-from-homeschool-creations_edited-1

 

There are several pages for each continent: a blank continent image, one showing countries/territories within the continent, and another labeling each of the countries/territories within the continent (Antarctica only has one page). 

All continent fact pages were designed using the traditional Montessori colors: Africa (green), Antarctica (white), Asia (yellow), Australia (brown), Europe (red), North America (orange),  and South America (pink). 

Each page has room to record the following information and also shows where that continent is in comparison to other continents: 

  • Size/Area
  • Number of Countries
  • Population
  • Highest Point
  • Place with Most People
  • Climate
  • Top Landmarks
  • Natural Resources
  • Nearby Oceans

We’ve been using the below books to help us fill in the information blanks on each continent fact file: 


 

simple-continent-cards-from-homeschool-creations

The set also has seven half-sheet printables we recommend printing off onto cardstock and laminating. Use them as larger flash cards to show the various country/territory divisions on the continents. We have a copy in each of our continent boxes and will put them on the wall above our map when we are studying the continent. 

We also highly recommend taking part in a Little Passports subscription! Not sure which adventure to choose for your explorer? Check out these Little Passports blog posts and learn more about their four subscription options:

Download the Continent Fact Files & Continent Cards

Your family is more than welcome to download the 23 page Continent Fact Files as well – and we hope they are a help to you!

 Download button

 

More Geography Resources

 

world flag cards for matching free homeschool geography resources 10 tools for teaching geography - hands on ways to incorporate geography learning


Click on one of the globe to search for geography resources by continent. Each page has downloads for flag coloring and information pages, mapping pages, and links to blog post full of lesson plans and additional information.

Africa   Asia   Australia
Europe    North America    South America
 

10 Tools for Teaching Geography & Exploring the World

10 tools for teaching geography - hands on ways to incorporate geography learning

We are barely finished with this school year, and over the last few weeks (ok, months) I’ve been piecing together what we will be doing during the upcoming school year. One of my initial plans for this past year was to work on world geography with the boys. Unfortunately, I went a little overboard in my mind and it was put to the side – mainly because I wanted to reinvent the wheel and put together a billion ideas (which were all good) into creating our own curriculum. 


Rather than running myself ragged – and truthfully in an effort to keep it more simple – I’ve decided to use something that is already pre-planned – Elementary Geography and Cultures from Masterbooks. It’s a curriculum I’ve been eyeing for quite some time (thanks to my friend Carisa) and includes the books Passport to the World and the Children’s Atlas of God’s World .  Yes, I will likely end up reworking some of my past geography printables and also create a few additional go-alongs for what we are doing, BUT I am so very excited about this one year world geography plan. 

Now, while having a curriculum framework to follow is great, the most effective way to teach our kids geography is through the hands-on tools that go along with ANY curriculum. Here are 10 tools for teaching geography – all things our family has used (and will use again) to keep learning fun.

10 Tools for Teaching Geography

10 tools for teaching geography and exploring the world

1 // Read Lots of Literature (and then some more)

One of the things we enjoyed the most our first geography go-round were the many books that are available based on the countries we studied. From missionaries that served in the country to picture books about artists or scientists, there is an amazing abundance of books to read and learn through. If you’d like to see the books we read through before, check out this page and click on the continent link to see favorites by country. 

2 // Play and Learn Music

Music can be one of the best tools to use for children to memorize things. Our girls used Geography Songs and we’ll use that again for learning countries, bodies of water, and continents.

Also spend time listening to composers who were born in the different countries or music that is native to the geographical areas. Take a trip to your library and check out a few CDs or have fun browsing YouTube to see traditional dances. 

3 // Create Art

Amazon Animal Chalk Pastel-17

Learn about artists native to the country you are studying or special art styles that are based in a geographical region.  When we were studying the Amazon, we used chalk pastels to draw frogs, toucans, and other animals from the rainforest. They were some of our favorite drawings we’ve done! 

4 // Create Continent Boxes

Put aside and group all of the hands-on materials you collect into boxes (or bags) based on countries or continents. Over the years we’ve collected many fun things (some from our subscription to Little Passports) and also some new materials (I am absolutely in love with TOOBS and their animals and landmark figures). I’ve purchased seven photo storage boxes to keep all our materials in one spot. (Thanks to Counting Coconuts for the idea.)

5 // Learn about the Animals

Include a little science learning into each geographical area you study by looking at animals that are native to to that country. Our girls loved learning about kangaroos and koalas when we studies Australia, peacocks when we learned about India – and there are so many more. Learn about their habits, diet, and classification. We often created lapbooks and those stayed on our shelves to review for years to come.

6 // Eat and Cook a Special Meal Together

 

Cooking is not only a life skill for kids to learn, but it can be a memorable way to learn about a country. Depending on the country you are studying, pick a recipe or create a meal that would be native to that country (granted Antarctica might be a little hard…), but snow cones might be a favorite! Every now and then we would treat the kids to a special meal out if we had a great restaurant in town, because sometimes the cultural experience is equally (or even more) fun. If Pinterest is too overwhelming, the book Eat Your Way Around the World is full of recipes to try.

 

7 // Put a Puzzle Together

While you are reading out loud or keeping fidgeting kids busy, pull out a puzzle and work on it together. We have all of the GeoPuzzles and absolutely LOVE them. Rather than being regular shaped puzzle pieces, each piece is shaped like the countries within that continent. 

8 // Make Lego Creations

Using Legos in the Classroom

Legos may never leave our home. Our kids have a plethora of them, and we will definitely be incorporating them into our geography time filling out blank outline maps, building famous landmarks…or getting a good laugh in when the kids depict the most hilarious historical scenes with LEGOs. (Sometimes you just have to laugh even though beheading are no laughing matter.)

9 // Draw Through the Countries

Have a child that loves to draw? Pull out the Draw Write Now series and let your kids illustrate their way around the world. Use the Draw and Journal pages to draw a picture of an animal or landmark in that country and write down a few facts to go along. Our kids love to draw while I’m teaching – and it can help them remember facts better as well. Geography Through Art is another great book that includes art projects using different mediums – from all around the world.  

10 // Use Geography Printables

free geography resources

If you know me well, you’ll know that I love creating printables that help our kids in the learning process. Over the years we have used a variety of printables, both ones I’ve pulled together and ones from other blogging friends. Here are a few free geography resources

 

Those are a few of the ways we incorporate fun into our geography studies – how has your family expanded geography learning together? 

 


Our Studies of Italy: Week 2

While there is so much more that we could do in our studies, we kept it fairly simple this week. In all honestly, Italy is a place we could spend waaaaay more time learning about ~ ancient Rome, the Roman empire, Pompeii…the list goes on! We started our study of Italy last week and that post also has some other great links and resources, so be sure to check it out!

Here are the things we focused on this week and some links we liked and used.

Monday

  • Quick review of last week’s studies: capital, major cities, geography features {i.e. Italy is a peninsula, Sicily is an island}
  • Took a virtual tour of Italy
  • Geography song about Eastern Europe ~ point out countries while singing
  • Color & learn about the flag of Italy

click thumbnail to download the pdf flag activity

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

  • Review geography song
  • Read Michaelangelo by Diane Stanley
  • Had fun trying to paint while laying on our backs {a little messy and tricky…poor Michaelangelo!}
  • Stamped our passports, put our papers in our notebooks and packed up since our trip to Italy is done!

Resources and Websites

Books We’re Using

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Our Study of Italy: Week 1

Our last stop in our tour of Europe is Italy. We found some great {and fun} books to read this week and Laurianna decided toward the end of the week that she wanted to learn more about the Colosseum…until she found out more of what went on there ~ and then not so much anymore!

Monday

  • Geography song about Eastern Europe ~ point out countries while singing
  • Locate & map country features
  • Color & label map of Italy {see map activity below}
  • Use atlas to learn more about Italy

click thumbnail to download the pdf map activity

Tuesday

  • Review geography song
  • Major cities in Italy and the capital of Italy
  • Visit National Geographic for Kids site: Italy
  • Story from Around the World in 80 Tales

Wednesday

  • Review geography song
  • Geography features ~ seas/oceans around Italy, island {Sicily}, peninsula
  • Read Katy and the Mona Lisa

Thursday

  • Review geography song
  • Read Papa Picollo
  • Watch some videos about the colosseum on YouTube

Resources and Websites

Books We’re Using

Learning About Spain: Week 2

We continued on our journey through Spain focusing this week a little more on the culture and also art {Picasso}. We also spent time learning about Columbus {and yes, I know he wasn’t from Spain, but Spain was generous in supporting his trip, so we tied it in that way}. :)

Here’s a look at how we spent our second week learning about Spain.

Monday

  • Quick review of main stuff from our first week studying Spain
  • Geography song for Southern Europe
  • Look at the currency for Spain
  • Read story from Around the World in 80 Tales {link in book carousel below}
  • Visit National Geographic for Kids site

Tuesday

  • Review geography song
  • Talk about Christopher Columbus {from Italy, but trip funded by Spain}
  • Story of Ferdinand on You Tube


Wednesday

  • Review geography song
  • Talk about Picasso
  • Picasso art project ~ Picasso faces. We pulled out oil pastels and created a collage of faces with cubistic/abstract design. They had a little trouble understanding how to make the faces ‘mesh’ at first, but LOVED it once they got going!

Thursday

  • Review geography song
  • Running of the bulls and bull fighting ~ YouTube clips
  • Put together food from country {pico de gallo}

Resources and Websites

Books We’re Using

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Learning About Spain: Week 1

We didn’t quite squeeze in all of Europe last year, so we are continuing our tromp through Europe with Spain this fall. There is so much that we could cover and literally spends weeks upon weeks studying the country, but we’re trying to stick to a two-week study of each country.

Here’s a look at how we spent our first week of learning about Spain.

Monday

  • Introduce geography song about Eastern Europe ~ point out countries while singing
  • Locate & map Spain {wall map, atlas, and globe} ~ find capital and major geographical features
  • Use atlas to learn more about Spain
  • Read The Story of Ferdinand
  • Color & label map of Spain

click thumbnail to download the pdf map activity

Tuesday

click thumbnail to download the pdf map activity

Wednesday

  • Review geography song
  • Geography feature ~ Pyrennes Mountains
  • Read about Picasso and visit website @ his art {talked about cubism and looked at some funky art}
  • Read Story of Ferdinand again
  • Watched video collage with Picasso’s art

Thursday

  • Review geography song
  • Read about Ponce de Leon {the kids were so sad he died from an arrow hitting him}
  • Story from Favorite Fairy Tales Told in Spain

Resources and Websites

  • Time for Kids Spain – Includes a sightseeing guide, history timeline, native lingo, fact file and teacher’s guide
  • Travel for Kids – gives some great suggestions for actually traveling Spain with kids along with books that are recommended by regions in Spain
  • Spanish Explorers – Ponce de Leon, Cortez, Magellan, and more
  • Mr. Picasso Head – hilarious online ‘game’ where kids create their own Picasso-like work of art
  • My Kids Art – talks about Picasso and his life


Books We’re Using

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