Archive for the ‘Geography’ Category

LEGO States

Monday, May 4th, 2015

LEGO-statesIf you are studying the geography of the United States, why not make some LEGO states? All you need is a couple of green bases and a bucket of red LEGO’s.

Look at the shape of each state before you begin outlining the state. You can use an atlas, a map online, or a puzzle piece. We have a wooden puzzle of the United States, and my son used the shape of the puzzle piece to create the outline for the state.

Once you have outlined the state with red LEGO’s on the green bases, you will want to fill in the rest of the state. This part is super easy and can even be done by preschoolers who want to help. Make sure you have added any details.

Here is a LEGO model of Connecticut:

LEGO-connecticutHere is a LEGO model of Oklahoma:


You can also add mountain ranges for the states by using a second row of red LEGO’s outlining the mountain ranges. You can even get creative and add other sightseeing places with other colors of LEGO’s to add interest!

If you enjoyed this post on LEGO states, you will love the workshop: Living Geography: Travel the World from your Living Room.


World Cake

Monday, April 6th, 2015

world-cakeIf you’ve ever wanted to excite your children about geography, why not make a world cake? It’s super easy!

Just bake a round cake in any flavor (I prefer chocolate). Get some white frosting. You will want to get two containers so that you don’t have to scrimp.

You will be frosting the entire cake with blue frosting, so one whole frosting container should be tinted blue with cake icing tint, which you can get at party stores and even some craft stores. Frost the cake.

Now open the second icing container and tint it green. Looking at a globe or a world map, grab a table knife and outline the shape of the continents on the blue icing, making a ridge. Now fill in the ridge with green icing.

It’s easier if you put the green icing into a ziplock bag (not a cheap bag that will pop and leave your hands green for a week). Snip a small hole in one corner of the bag, and outline the continents before filling them in. Depending on the look you want, you can use a table knofe to smooth the green continents.

Now your world cake is complete. This is a perfect cake for a themed party about geography, world travel, missions, or airplanes.

If you enjoyed making this world cake, you will love Living Geography: Travel the World from your Living Room.

Rainforest at Cannon Beach

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

rainforest-at-cannon-beachWe hiked through a rainforest at Cannon Beach, and it was beautiful! We were at Ecola State Park, where we could see breathtaking views from the side of the mountain. The park is right beside the beach itself. The air is humid, and the greenery from the moss and ferns is so vibrant! Take a look at this massive tree with lots of greenery growing on top of its huge branches!

rainforest-2The sunlight shone through the trees to give the path an almost green glow. We saw a fallen tree with moss growing on it. Some of the trees were hundreds of years old.

rainforestWe parked our car in one of the two parking lots and hiked up to the lighthouse lookout, where the lighthouse was still quite far away. The trail was two miles, so the entire hike was four miles. The scenery was beautiful the whole time. You could look down over Cannon Beach for a while until you were around the side of the mountain.

rainforest-cannon-beachIf I had been alone with some paper and a pencil, I might have sat down and written some poetry. Look at this path… Doesn’t it make you feel inspired?

forest-pathMy daughter and I began counting rings on the tree trunk to see how old the tree was when it fell. This gave us an indication for how old the thicker trees were.

tree-ringsWe found lots of mushrooms during our walk. Mushrooms thrive in damp environments, so I was not surprised. These mushrooms looked almost cartoon-like!

mushroom-1Some of the varieties I had never seen before. I would have brought a mushroom guide if I had known we were going to see so many varieties of mushroom.

mushroom-2Some were growing straight out of the tree trunks. These are called shelf mushrooms.

mushroom-3This shelf mushroom looks like blackened lava from a volcano!

mushroom-4My husband took this picture from a low angle so that you can see how small you feel among such tall trees.

forestSo many beautiful scenes presented themselves as we climbed the mountain. Here is a scene from Cannon Beach that includes Haystack Rock.

views-from-cannon-beach-rainforestThen you see partial views of the ocean and seashore through the trees .

view-of-cannon-beachMany rocks jut out of the water. One of the larger rocks has a hole through it.

rocks-in-waterWe thoroughly enjoyed hiking through the rainforest at Cannon Beach!

Find out what else we did while we were at Cannon Beach: Our Cannon Beach Vacation

Make Your Own State Puzzle

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014


You can make your own state puzzle by cutting out each state from a wall map, gluing the pieces onto poster board, and cutting them out again. The pieces are then more durable, and your kids can put the puzzle together over and over until they learn the location of each of the states. The fun thing about this puzzle is that it’s like a floor puzzle–it’s so large. You can store the pieces in a Ziplock bag.


Other geography activities you can do with this puzzle:

  • Hold up a state, and the child has to name the state from the shape.
  • Name the capital of the state you are holding up.
  • Blindfold the child and hand the child a state. See if the child can figure out which state it is.
  • Hold up a state and name the bordering states.
  • Time yourself to see how fast you can put together the puzzle. Hold races between children to see who can put the puzzle together the fastest.
  • Hold up a state and have the child say the two-letter abbreviation for the state.
  • Grab a slide projector or an overhead projector. Hold up each piece and look at the silhouette. Name the state.

Take a look at how you can make your own state puzzle: