April 29, 2012

Learned Tot: Geography

I have always loved geography, not so much topography but knowing where you are in the world. This subject is pretty easy to integrate into daily activities, in the car and at the dinner table. We often go overboard with maps and geography quizzes but it is paying off in a big way, awakening in our tot wanderlust. Incidentally, all of these items are $20 or under.

Speaking of dinner table, place mat is one map that won't get ruined by spilled snacks. You can scribble on the blank map on the flip side with a pencil or special crayon. We often brush up on places during meals and numerous snacks.
Parent Involvement: HIGH but can multitask with this one.

Growing up my dad played with me Capitals of the World game. We upped the ante with an inflatable globe (which I can tell you is WAY more fun than a stationary one). One holding the world asks a question about a place or landmark - if you answer correctly, you get the ball. Sample question: Point on the globe Australia.
Parent Involvement: HIGH - I mean sure, tot can throw the ball about but as a learning tool parent interaction is a must.
I've mentioned Leap Frog Solar System before - once you invest in the Tag reader, might as well maximize the learning. Double sided map provides factoids and questions about the states of the Union. There is also a map of the world on our wish list.
Parent Involvement: LOW (You will need to download info onto your Leap Frog's Tag wand to use this kit, otherwise this is very hands off)
Good old-fashioned atlas, fun to look at continents and pictures of the world. We do have one but I have my eye on this one from National Geographic. 
Parent Involvement: HIGH - unless your kid of a reading age.

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