Middle School > Social Sciences > Geography
Geography is more than just about looking at maps and memorizing where different places are on the map. That’s the boring way of studying geography, and it isn’t the only way of doing so. In fact, there are a lot of engaging activities for students to learn the subject in a much better way.
First of all, students need to know why they study geography. A lot of them are clueless as to the purpose of the subject; many would just say “because I just have to.” It’s good to fill them in on the answer to the question “why do you study geography?” The video entitled “Why Geography Matters” from TeacherTube is a good start. Once students have a good foundation on the purpose of the subject, they would then have a motivation to learn.
Some more introductory lessons would also help. There are a few TeacherTube videos on the “Five Themes of Geography”, which describe the basic parts of the subject in a nutshell. It’s very important to discuss these basics first so that students will better understand the future lessons.
Onto the interactive stuff now. One thing students would love is when they get actively involved in the learning process. So why not have them, say, build replicas of famous landmarks with building blocks and put them on top of a big map? It’s a great way to make students remember both where a landmark is located and what it looks like.
Another nice way of studying geography is through music. Let students listen to various types of music from all around the world, and point out where they come from. Not only do they learn about different places, they learn parts of the cultures of those places as well. As a bonus, students will also know the different musical instruments of the world.