Map Munching


We call our new game: "Map Munching."
It's a great way to make snack time educational. Plus, there is a built-in reward system!

I've blogged before about Jay's love of geography.  Like anyone, he forgets things if he doesn't review.  The challenge is to keep the learning of geography fresh, while reviewing.  The same old thing just won't do.  If you (the Mom) need a geography refresher, jump in and play too.  You can both have fun with this game we made up today :)

We started with the states: Cover your map (this one is from the $1 spot at Target) with one snack on each state. Ask your child to find your home state. If he does, he gets the snack that is sitting on it :) You can branch out from there according to your child's age and attention span.

 Want to play too?

You need: a map (see links below to print one out), and some small snacks like: cheerios marshmallows, trail mix, etc.

Ideas for ways to play Map Munching:

Identify the State:
1-Put snacks on a few states and practice just the same ones until your child has learned them.  Ask your child to find your home state. If he does, he gets the snack that is sitting on it :) Repeat with other states.
2-Use geographic regions, like: west, midwest, southwest, New England, East, southeast.
3-Repeat. Repetition really is the key. You can use snack time again tomorrow, or another way to review. Just keep at it. You will be surprised what children can remember.

Identify the Country:
1-Put snacks on a few countries and practice just the same ones until your child learned them. Ask your child to find your home country. If he does, he gets the snack that is sitting on it :) Repeat with other countries.

2- Use geographic areas such as Continents to break it down.

3-Work on your home country/state first and then branch out from there. Utilize what your child is familiar with. Does a relative or friend live in a certain place? Talk about it. Look at pictures of that place.
4-Repeat. Repetition really is the key. You can use snack time again tomorrow, or another way to review. Just keep at it. You will be surprised what children can remember.



Identify the Capitals:
1-Put snacks on a few capitals (countries or state capitals) and practice just the same ones until your child has learned them. Ask your child to find your country's capital or your state's capital (depending on which game you are playing). If he does, he gets the snack that is sitting on it :) Repeat with others.

2-Start on your home country/state CAPITAL first and then branch out from there. Utilize what your child is familiar with. Does a relative or friend live in a certain capital city that you can talk about and see photos of?

3-Repeat. Repetition really is the key. You can use snack time again tomorrow, or another way to review. Just keep at it. Geography is FUN!  You will be surprised what children can remember.

{Little Project Tip} We used a Children's Atlas (Border's Bargain Book) open to different pages today but I want to laminate some maps to use for this and another geography idea I have brewing...so stay tuned!

Do Mom and Dad want to join in the geography fun?  Get a map too and make it a race!

They say that the best learning happens when your child is having fun. A full belly helps too :)
That was a fun learning Little Project. Hope you can use it too!

UPDATE: Renee left a comment about playing Don't Eat Pete too-great idea! I can just hear it now, "Don't eat Spain! or "Arizona!"


P.S. For more educational games, check out my links in the left side bar.

60 comments:

Christy Killoran said...

I love this idea. I am somewhat obsessed with teaching my children geography because I don't think I learned enough geography in school. We have a lot of puzzles, games, etc but this is an idea I have not seen before. Thanks.

My Many Coloured Days said...

What a great idea. I suspect this may be the new "don't eat pete" game in our house!

mushroommeadows said...

This is so clever!! I would even try this for myself to brush up on my geography skills...haha :)

elspeth said...

We did this yesterday working on the continents. Joce loved the chocolate chip game. I think it will take a few more games to get it all down.

Kristina said...

This was a featured geography activity on a site I often check into, and this game is brilliant! It is so simple and I have come to find out that learning is wayyyyy more fun with food : ) Did this with my son today and he enjoyed collecting all the goodies! We'll definitely have to do this several more times, but I don't think my son will mind ; ) Glad I found this idea!

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