Jump to content

Menu

I bought too many geography programs. Help me decide.


AimeeM
 Share

Recommended Posts

I have three kiddos with a very big gap -- kindergarten, 2nd grade, and 10th grade. The two youngers have significant special needs. Geography (at least the core of it) is part of our Morning Meeting, and all of the children (even the teenager) really, really enjoy on Morning Meeting... so moving geography to be independent isn't something I'm willing to do. 

 

I do give DD15 extended assignments for the subjects we brush on during morning meeting.

 

I do NOT mind (at all) if geography is something that we cover over several years. In other words, I don't care if a program can't be covered in one year. 

 

 

I have, on hand, the following:

 

Trail Guide to World Geography (as well as the CD)

The Ultimate Geography and Timeline Guide

Expedition Earth: My Passport to the World

 

TUG confuses me.

 

Trail Guide annoys me. I bought it at a conference and I bought all components that the publisher said I need -- right there, she handed them to me herself. And, for the life of me, I can't find half of the answers needed to answer the questions in Trail Guide... in the atlases she sold me.

The Trail Guide specifies that high schoolers use the McNally Answer Atlas... but she sold me a different McNally atlas for high school?

I bought Eat Your Way and Geography Through Art to use with this as well.

 

Expedition Earth looks very surface to me. I'm not sure why -- it just looks like busy work, and wouldn't work at all for my non-readers, as it seems pretty boring to be used as a read aloud.

 

 

If you've used any of these, please tell me what I'm missing -- or how you used them :P

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've tried Trail Guide. I found the same thing. We couldn't find half of the answers. I was super frustrated. We ended up just using the maps.

I have yet to find a geography program that I love. This year we're using Draw Africa. We've learned a lot of the countries. I should have put together a list of travel videos and books on the countries to add to our study. That would have made it really fun. Oh well!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've tried Trail Guide. I found the same thing. We couldn't find half of the answers. I was super frustrated. We ended up just using the maps.

I have yet to find a geography program that I love. This year we're using Draw Africa. We've learned a lot of the countries. I should have put together a list of travel videos and books on the countries to add to our study. That would have made it really fun. Oh well!

Yep! This is what I did this year. We used Draw Africa, 10 days in Africa and for each week used books and documentaries etc to highlight that weeks country. My children say geography is their favorite. It has worked so well and they can rattle off the whole continent on a blank map now. It is awesome!

 

Packaged geography curriculum always leaves me wanting more (or less!) so going with my own plan worked well.

 

With that said one of my favorite geography curriculums is Visualize World Geography. The videos are a bit low quality and goofy but oh my goodness it works so well!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sheppard Software online is a great supplement. We used Draw Europe and when they finished they followed up with Sheppard Software. It is free - just games, but they've gotten really good and memorizing at least the names and capitals.  

 

The 10th grader might want Human Geography though -- my oldest took it in ninth grade and LOVED it.  She was at PS. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We used the Trail Guide and the Ultimate Guide in different years.

 

The first year we used Trail Guide and did the mapping. I had to do a lot of internet lookups. I didn't buy the atlas, but I had one, and not everything was in there.  Even the Usborne Geography Encyclopedia didn't have everything.  I started with the Uncle Josh's outline maps and hated them--too much to draw onto the map. Plus I had to photocopy.  I ended up using Scholastic maps (Super Book of Outline Maps--ebook) and printing those off. They have rivers at least. You might want to see if the Nat Geo blackline maps are better (they are free): https://education.nationalgeographic.com/education/mapping/outline-map/?map=Australia&ar_a=1  (Note: I am getting a security error for this site right now. Hopefully they will resolve that).

 

So the second year we did a focus on animals, weather, and culture, using the TUG.  We also used Geography through Art that year.  We had a sort of "country page" for each country we talked about (obviously didn't cover all of them) that had places to record what continent it was on, what language they spoke, etc.  We read the pages in the TUG about that region and the countries and I supplemented a bit with other books I found. This would have been a good time to bring in "Children Like Me" but I don't think I did.  I found some montessori cards with pictures of animals from each continent/country that went into their notebooks. I have a schedule I used for this year that I can email you--just PM me. 

 

Overall I don't think the Trail Guide and TUG are bad books. However, I have no idea how you would work *all* of it into one year of geography. You have to pick and choose and I don't think they are terribly clear on that.  Also I really think they need a better blackline map component that has the mountains and rivers on it that are referenced in the book (at least to be used as a key). Some of the landmarks/rivers/mountains were harder than I expected to locate on a map and I found that super frustrating.  I realize that for a high schooler, looking things up online and putting them on the map has value--but my kids were in 2nd and 3rd when we started TG and it was just crazy.

 

 

ETA: more info  =)

Edited by cintinative
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I read a review on the Exodus Books site, and it suggests that Expedition Earth: My Passport to the World would make an excellent supplement to Brenda Runkle's World Physical Geography course. Just food for thought. Never was drawn to any of those you listed. However, A Child's Geography is a series also published by Knowledge Quest that my little man really enjoyed us doing together.  

 

My little man has also enjoyed Memoria Press Geography. This year, Geography III has been his favorite of that series.

Edited by NCAmusings
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...