NGS Daily jigsaw puzzles

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Geography Awareness Week: Mapping the America's, art activities

I get a newsletter from It always has great multi-cultural art activities w/lesson plans! The newsletter I just received has art ideas to Celebrate the ethnic diversity and cultures of Latin America during Geography Awareness Week with the following links : October 12 is Día de la Raza, Columbus Day, and Native American Day.

(Aztec mosaic face masks)


(Carib basket making)

(building historical voyage displays in a bottle)

(floating gardens of Mexico City)

(Mexican - Huichol - masks)

(under the Aztec sun)


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

An old favorite...

Where the "Heck" is Matt?

Where the Hell is Matt? (2008) from Matthew Harding on Vimeo.


I went to a district social studies meeting yesterday, and a teacher presented a website list of multicultural music resources for teachers and students.  The presenter gave me permission to share a few of the gems from her website list....great music resources!

(Some of the following sites sell music, others have instructions &/or words.) (fun site that shows short videos of different cultures singing and dancing) (kids songs from around the world) (world library>bilingual children's songs) (Putamayo Kids>teacher tools downloadable teaching guides to teach social studies integrated with the songs)**(for elementary children: stay on the Putamayo kids site ..not guarantee of appropriateness of the music on the other part of the site)


Lehi-Evanston-Bear Lake Fall Photo Journal

My husband and I recently took a round trip "Fall foliage" tour from: Lehi, Utah >Evanston, Wyoming>Bear Lake, Utah>Logan Canyon, Utah>Sardine Canyon, Utah>Wastach Front Range>New Legacy Highway>Lehi, Utah. We saw lots of fall foliage, beautiful Canyons, Low level reservoirs, end-of-the-season crop gathering, cattle drives, and the New Legacy Highway from Farmington to North SLC. Lots of quiet, little towns showing signs of rapid new home building and land development...SAD!!!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Travel to Latin America WEBQUEST

I found a great teacher resource for the Geography Awareness Week (10/16-22/08) theme of "Mapping the America's". It is a Webquest that asks teenagers to design a one-week travel brochure to a Latin American country. A more engaging "twist" to the standard "country reports": See this link for the webquest:

Monday, September 15, 2008


National Geographic has a fabulous film project called the "All Roads film project". The films being produced are wonderful insites into indigenous cultures and could be great resources for geography and social studies teachers! To find additional information about the All Roads film festival:

"All Roads is a National Geographic initiative created to provide an international platform for indigenous and underrepresented minority-culture artists to share their cultures, stories, and perspectives through the power of film and photography. All Roads is an exciting, groundbreaking film festival, photography program, and film grant program rolled into one."

Many of the films are available for purchase on DVD from the All Roads website above. Video clips and lesson plans are available for one of the films entitled "Articson" at the following website:

(Note to Teachers: As in all videos, please preview above videos for appropriate content and language prior to use in classrooms.)

Monday, September 8, 2008

How to track a hurricane, lesson plans

It's hurricane season in the America's, and what better way to see "Geography in Action!" than by mapping/tracking hurricanes.
Get those maps out and track Hurricane Ike with great lesson plans and activities from Education World's website:

This is the latest MSNBC interactive website with videos, slideshow, storm tracker data about Hurricane Ike:

Latest alerts + satellite data from NOAA hurricane center:

Friday, September 5, 2008

Elementary Geography Ideas

  • Start all social studies/history units with a geography lesson (teaching ancient Egypt? Make sure the kids know where Egypt is…compare modern & ancient maps)
  • Use non-fiction geography & social studies reading materials instead of fiction reading materials to teach reading skills + non-fiction reading strategies, etc.
  • Instead of county reports, have the students write reports on the world’s deserts, rivers, grasslands, forests, mountain ranges, etc—use the 5 themes of geography to guide their reports.
  • At the beginning of the year, teach a physical geography lesson so students will learn vocabulary and develop mental images of the earth’s surface.
  • Have students build a geography physical features dictionary including, pictures and locations where each “feature” could be found.
  • Using inexpensive salt dough, have the kids make mini-models of physical features (peninsula, atoll, mesa/butte, etc).
  • Register your school for the National Geographic Bee. Start a class geography club to get ready for your school Bee.
  • Use maps and globes during math to help teach: Circumference, ratio (map scale), degrees.
  • (Mapping the World by Heart program)

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

CCBC country reading list

I found a great site that compiles subject related book titles for different ages and subjects: CCBC (The Cooperative Children's Book Center/University of Wisconsin)

They have a great list of recommended books about different Countries on the link below. This would be a great list of books for  Geography Awareness Week's theme of "Mapping the America's"!! (stories from the America's)

This is a list of 40 Spanish/English bilingual books that might be useful also: