Twisting Around the Map As We Learn About Our World

by Kaye Swain

My grandkids have been learning about rocks, mountains, and volcanoes this month and we've been having a ton of fun together on just those topics. After our first set of volcanic eruptions, I went to Walmart and bought an inexpensive world map for less than $6. I taped some extra yellow and green poster board I had bought to the back of it to make it sturdier (great prices for this at both Michael's and Dollar Tree. :) ). This way, it laid flat but was much sturdier.

The Sandwich Generation granny nanny turned a giant map into a fun learning game for the grandkids

I had spotted a wonderful idea at My Home Sweet Home Online for making the Seven Summits (the highest mountain in each continent) out of play-doh and having the grandkids place them on the map to learn where they were located as well as practice learning the names of each. We had a great learning time doing that.

Then the Sandwich Generation granny nanny and grandkids used playdoh to make small models of the Seven Summits

Then my oldest grandchild came up with another fun idea for practicing these mountains with a variation of Twister. I would call out the mountain name and continent and they would scramble to put a hand or a foot on the correct location. Sometimes I would tell them what hand/foot to use, sometimes they'd just do their own, and all the time, they were laughing and having fun while, hopefully, sinking valuable information deeper in their brain. :) 

Then my grandkids came up with the idea of playing twister as they figured out where each of the 7 mountains belonged - fun for Classical Conversations week 15 cycle 1

My youngest grandchild and I even had fun figuring out tips to help him spot those continents faster:

  1. Asia – the biggest continent.
  2. Europe – look for the boot in the middle, which is Italy and that whole small area is Europe
  3. Africa – a giant elephant ear (we got that from GeoDash, an educational app from National Geographic that my grandkids love. It combines a fun game with animal "trading cards" full of interesting and often funny information about various animals and usually 1-3 jokes as well. 
  4. North America – we are pretty familiar with this one
  5. South America – attached to the bottom of North America
  6. Australia – The huge "island" on the far right of the map
  7. Antarctica – The big white continent at the "bottom" of the map 

Not stupendously scientific, I know, but a lot of fun and they're doing much better with finding the continents, so I'm happy. For that matter, I'm getting better at finding my way around the map as well. That makes me happy too. Great brain exercise for us all – even my senior mom has enjoyed watching the process!!!

P.S. Want more ideas and resources for geography and/or the 7 Summits? Click here. :) 

Such fun for grandparents - in AND out of the Sandwich Generation - at Grandparents Say It Saturday Linky Party - Do Join in the fun

Fun for grandparents - in AND out of the Sandwich Generation - at Grand Social

Hip Homeschool Hop has great resources for grandparents and grandchildren - especially if you help with their homeschooling

Kaye

P.S. Thank you so much for your comments. I enjoy them very much and read each one. I also love the grand ideas so many of you share that help and encourage other readers. Thank you.