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6 Ideas for Teaching Homeschool Geography

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Disclosure: As an Amazon associate, I may earn a small commission from the purchase of these geography books and resources, at no additional cost to you! Thank you for your support!

What Is Geography?

Geography (the study of the world) is so much more than textbooks flung open to the geopolitical maps of our present year. It’s more than a brief summary of a group of people in a faraway land.

Geography, the study of the world, is a voyage to a person. It’s an adventure to a place. Surely we cannot get there by plane, car, or boat every single time. So, how do we visit the plethora of places we could explore on our planet?

We get there through books.

How might you record your journey into a new place? Why, the commonplace book is our haven for recording thoughts, quotes, proverbs as we interact with what we read, right?

I think this one is pretty amazing:

The commonplace book is for our reading. We process and respond there.

How about having a way to process the visits we take to a foreign land? Well, if you take a literal trip or vacation, then I have just the thing for you! This Travel Four Square is a parent’s dream because kids stay engaged with what they are learning as they visit a new place. (It does not have to be a foreign land! It can be a day trip.)

If you’re looking for a way to work geography into your homeschool’s fabric, then I have a few ideas that might help jumpstart your imagination!

Since studying geography oftentimes gets us out of doors, I wanted to make sure you don’t miss my Year of Nature Study unit. Geography and nature study can be easily integrated, too.

Tip #1: Start Small: Your Home

Charlotte Mason said to start small. Beginning with basic directions (left vs. right, behind vs. in front of), and moving towards larger, abstract map concepts is the way to begin your geography teaching at home.

  • Go for a nature walk. Map your route.
  • Map your bedroom.
  • Map your backyard.
  • Map your neighborhood.

Follow That Map! (great intro. to geography map skills)

Elementary Geography by Charlotte Mason

Map Skills for Today: Finding Your Way (grade 1) by Scholastic (for a more modern approach)

Map Skills are not the only thing we study in geography. What about the lives and places of other people?

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This book is really detailed and has great illustrations:

How Children Lived by Chris Rice (my children love it!)

Tip #2: Get to Know Your City

  • Take a walking tour in your neighborhood
  • Walk through historic landmarks in town
  • Read about the beginnings of your town or city
  • Map out your routes to activities

Tip #3: Get to Know Your State

  • Map your trips on a state map
  • Visit your state parks

Tip #4: Get to Know Your Country

Tip #5: Add on Geographic Formations/Map Basics

  • Know Cardinal directions (Never Eat Soggy Wheat – North, East, South, West)
  • Know Intermediate directions (northeast/northwest, southeast/southwest)
  • Use a compass (whenever you go anywhere!)

Tip #6: Get to Know Other Citizens of the World

  • Books highlighting people from around the world: have you checked out the ones below?
  • Question: If you took a flight to x location from y location, heading east, over which oceans would you fly? Over which continents? Over which countries?
  • Material World by Peter Menzel
  • Hungry Planet by Peter Menzel

Charlotte Mason Geography Curriculum We’ve Enjoyed*

Visits to Europe (Simply Charlotte Mason)*

Visits to Asia

Visits to Africa

Visits to South and Central America, Australia

Visits to North America

Visits to the Middle East

3 Geography Writing Prompts

Imagine: How does your school day differ from a child’s school day in x country?

Imagine: You are a child in x country. Describe a typical birthday celebration.

Imagine: You have to get dressed for the day and you live in x country. What would you wear?

Did I give you enough ideas? I sure hope you leave me feeling a little more inspired to study the world around you with your homeschoolers.

If you think of some ideas that I did not cover, please leave a comment below. I always love hearing from you!

If you liked this post, you might also like:

Nature Study

A Classical Conversations Approach to Cycle 1: Ancient (includes geography book suggestions!)

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