Do you have a mini-topographer in your life? Or is your little one more interested in fantasy realms than maps of the USA?
Whether they’re on team geography or not, introducing fun geography activities can help kids learn basic geography facts about US states and the world at large.
Come with us as we explore why kids need to learn geography. We’ll also explain when kids should start learning geography and how games can benefit learning. Finally, we’ll share interactive geography games for kids ages five to eight. These fun activities can be helpful in your homeschool social studies classroom and beyond.
Why Is Geography Important for Kids To Learn?
The study of geography has two critical parts:
One is to understand the names of continents, countries, states, cities, and even towns and individual streets, as well as the physical features of the earth, from mountains to rivers.
In addition, the second part of geography is how humans interact with the earth and themselves in various regions of the world. Beyond merely knowing the correct answers to their geography quizzes, this subject teaches students about the people living in the different parts of the world.
When kids learn about geography, they gain awareness of far-off places, improve non-fiction reading skills, and allow them to travel smarter as they get older. It also provides a sense of connection to other parts of the world.
When do Kids Begin To Learn Geography?
Kids can begin learning about geography at a very young age. While a two-year-old may not be able to point out each state, they may be able to differentiate a mountain from an ocean. They might even know a few country names by age three.
When kids begin school, they usually start a simple geography program that gradually increases throughout the school years. By middle school, they’re taking multiple choice map quizzes and learning about the intersection between history and geography.
How Do Games Help Teach Geography?
Geography is an essential subject, but it can be a bit mundane for many young students. Sitting and memorizing where specific landmarks are isn’t the most riveting activity.
However, when you add a card game or quiz game to the mix, kids learn in an active, fun way. Learning games may help them retain more information and stay focused on what they’re learning.
What Are Interactive Geography Games for Kids Ages 5 to 8?
Interactive geography games can help reinforce geography concepts kids have learned in school. Family engagement has been shown to improve test scores and social skills, as well as how kids feel about school.
Kinoo Connect is an incredible way for kids to interact with their long-distance family members or parents who happen to be away on work trips. Our app brings families together through video calls enhanced with activities and games.
Now, grandparents can be involved in their grandkid's learning process. Here are five interactive geography games kids can use to foster their geography skills over a video call — or in person!
Geography 20 Questions
Twenty questions is a game in which one person thinks of a word, and the other players must ask yes or no questions to guess the mystery word. Be careful! You only have 20 questions available.
For the geography version, choose a geography word that is age appropriate for your little one. Perhaps this secret word is “state” or “lake” for a kindergartener. For a third grader, you may be able to use a more complex word, like a specific state or name of a continent.
BINGO! How does one simple word elicit so much excitement?
Bingo is a game loved by all ages and is easily infused with geography. To get started, create your own geography bingo board by writing different geography words on each square.
Make sure to use words at your kiddo's reading level. In fact, this would be an opportune time to introduce new vocabulary terms and more advanced phrases; studies show that pushing past age-specific reading levels might be the key to raising the next generation of bookworms.
This game can practice both their geography skills and reading skills at the same time.
Geography Memory Game
If your little one is learning the US geography, you can create a memory game that requires them to match the states of America to their state capital.
To make it easier, start with ten to 15 states. Flip all the cards over and take turns matching each state to its respective capital city. Once all the cards are found, whoever has the most cards wins. As your child gets more familiar with the states, add more to the mix.
Pictionary is an interactive game that can be easily changed into a geography review. Create a stack of geography-related mystery words for players to draw. In this game, players take turns drawing a secret word while the other person guesses the word.
This game is an awesome opportunity to include long-distance grandparents. On Kinoo Connect, pull up a blank painting sheet, and you can play geography Pictionary no matter how far apart you live.
Geography Scavenger Hunt
Scavenger hunts are a wonderful way to enhance critical thought and problem-solving in children. While you may think of a scavenger hunt as looking for items within a large area, you can also create a scavenger hunt with a world map.
Create a map game by creating a list of different countries of the world, oceans, lakes, or mountains — depending on what your child is learning. Your growing explorer can look at the map and find each item on the list. To make it extra fun, you can use a dry-erase map, so they can use a dry-erase marker to circle the locations they have found.
Geography is a valuable subject in school that allows kids to learn about their world. Studying geography can introduce young ones to communities on the opposite side of the world, as well as teach them about their own neighborhood.
Very young children learn basic geography skills by exploring the work around them. It’s incorporated into school as early as preschool. Games can be a helpful way to bring excitement to a subject that is often learned through textbooks. Playing geography games at home helps kids become more engaged in the subject and creates stronger family bonds.
Kinoo Connect wants to help support those special family ties. Through our innovative, ever-changing app, your little one can video call loved ones while engaging in exciting games and activities — accessing the far reaches of the world with only a click and a magic wand.
Why Is Geography Important? There’s More Than You Think | University of the People
The importance of family engagement - Early Childhood Development | MSU
Scavenger Hunts | South Dakota State University
If We Want Bookworms, We Need to Get Beyond Leveled Reading | Edutopia