Having FUN with Geography!

We've been working on geography a lot recently.  I want both of my children to have a firm understanding of the seven continents and where they are in the world.  If I say, "Can you find Greece?" I want them to be able to do so quickly.   If they hear about Iraq on the nightly news I want them to know just where this is.  So, in an effort to cement our geography skills we have been learning The Continents Chant.  This hearkens back to my teaching days, and I thought I would share it with you.    (I apologize for my loud voice in the video -- that's the music teacher in me... I have a hard time letting the kids do it without my help... I love to watch how my youngest watches his sister to make sure he's getting it all right!)  

I have to tell you something funny.  Last year in co-op class for Kindergarten and First grade students we were studying geography.  I taught the children this continents chant.   They knew it and were so proud.  A middle school helper came in the room and I asked him if he could tell us all seven continents... he said six and couldn't come up with the seventh!   The little ones in the room just went through the chant to help him with the missing continent!   

In addition to this chant, we play a fun game with our dollar store world ball.  I simply throw them the ball and call out an ocean, continent, or country and they have to locate it as fast as they can.   I start easy and then get hard.  Today I threw the ball to my six year old and said "Mongolia" and he looked at me with one of those "DUH" looks and put his finger right on Mongolia.   My ten year old is very fast... I wish I would have had this understanding of geography at her age.  This is why I love homeschooling.  

With the continents ball it's also fun to sing "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands".   I keep the ball in my van, so we can practice during someone's piano lesson, swim practice, baseball practice, or if we just decide to stop and play at the park.   

We are also working our way through a simple children's atlas (we have several at home) and dad goes through the maps with them after dinner.  They're all having fun locating new places and talking about places we have been and would like to go.  

Later this week during computer time I'll also have the kids play some geography games at National Geographic Kids - oh, how we love this site!  

Do you have something fun you do with geography that you can share with me?