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Homeschooling | Making a United States Geography Study Unit on a Budget

I enjoy the freedom to be creative in how I homeschool my kindergarten and second-grade sons. I enjoy using FREE and cheap resources, too. Since I’m in the middle of teaching my boys American geography right now, this is the subject on my mind. I’m going to tell you what  I’m using and where I’m finding it.  However, you can search online for free resources for yourself and also use the library to create a unit study on any topic.

Subject:  U.S. Geography

1.   DVD’s.

All the following are free-to-borrow library DVDs by Schlessinger Media and are part of the U.S. Geography for Children series:

The Northeast
The Southeast
The Midwest
The Southwest
The West

(By the way, the same company puts out DVDs called State Capitals, The United States, and U.S. Commonwealth & Territories, as well as DVDs on Texas, Florida, California, Michigan and NewYork.)

2.   Maps.

So far we’ve covered the Midwest. There are 12 states in this region and they are divided into two smaller regions: the Plains Region and the Great Lakes Region. I give the boys a black and white copy of a USA map with the states labeled and I outlined the 12 states in one block. Then I have them color each smaller region a different color.

3.   My 50 cent lesson-helper.

We live in Ohio which is in the Great Lakes Region of the Midwest. And, I happen to have a short printable side lesson (comes with facts, cards, etc.) called The Great Lakes- Speedy Geography  (cost is only 50-cents) from Currclick.com, so we are learning about the Great Lakes as well.

4.   Free Books.

I also found a book series at the library called A True Book by Ann Armbruster that deals with each of the Great Lakes separately: Lake Erie, Lake Michigan, Lake Ontario, Lake Huron, and Lake Superior. We will use these to study the Great Lakes.

When it’s all said and done…

I put the boys’ worksheet and maps into their “North America” continent section of their three-ring notebook (which will be used for their assessment at the end of the year). You can see how I’ve set up their notebooks in this post.

Resources

Check out the following free links for more resources to build your own United States Geography unit studies.

Educational Links

Free printable maps
Free online matching games for states & capitals
Master List of Free Thematic Units

If you have any free resources to share please leave a comment.

In addition to homeschooling her boys, Tracy owns and writes from her blog Hall of Fame Moms sharing not only reviews on family-friendly products and places but also posts about homeschooling resources, frugal living, her faith and more. Like her boys', she enjoys wild things in nature. Catterpillars, bugs and tadpoles are welcomed guests in their home. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

1 Comment

  1. Christin

    March 26, 2012 at 1:21 pm

    Here is a link to a site that my sister likes to use while homeschooling her 3rd Grade son. She shared it with me because my girls are attending an International School in Europe and are not being taught specific USA geography. I plan to have my daughter use this site over the summer to supplement her education.

    http://www.sheppardsoftware.com/web_games.htm

    Great post, thanks for the tips!