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Information, Inspiration, and Encouragement
a Distinctively Christian Perspective of Home Education
Cindy Short and Sue Welch,
Co-Editors / http://www.TeachingHome.com
Table of Contents
5-Part Series: The Geography Connection
Part 1. The Geography/People Connection
Part 2-A. The Geography/Science Connection
Part 2-B. The Geography/Science Connection
• Physical Geography: Beginnings
• Geography Teaching Materials
• 19 Geography Teaching Tips
Part 3. The Geography/History Connection
Part 4. The Geography/Arts Connection
Part 5. The Geography/Present Connection
"Welcome to the Wonderful World of Geography"
Doorposts: "For This Is Right"
The Teaching Home Back Issues
Sunnyside Up: Humorous Anecdote
Geography is composed of three interrelated
information, skills, and perspectives. All three are necessary
for your children to be geographically informed.
These elements are reflected in the National
Standards' goals for geography education.
These divisions can be related to the stages
proposed by Dorothy Sayers' "Lost Tools of Learning," also known
as "classical" education:
Know and understand facts, concepts, and generalizations
(Grammar Stage: The fundamental rules of each
Apply geographic skills to observe, gather,
analyze, and present information
(Logic Stage: The ordered relationship of
Use geographic perspectives to evaluate, make
about, and report on issues, processes, and
(Rhetoric Stage: How the information, principles,
application of each subject may be clearly
According to the National Council for Geographic
surveys show that the geography knowledge of United States
students ranks far below students in such countries as Japan, the
United Kingdom, Germany, and Canada. In fact, geographical
knowledge has declined over the years, so that now many children
cannot read maps or locate states, cities, or important physical
features, even in the United States.
We trust that our 5-part series on geography
will help you
ensure that your children will have the geographic knowledge,
skills, and perspectives -- including a Christian perspective --
to best serve the Lord and mankind.
May the Lord bless you and your family for
The Pat Welch Family, Publishers
Pat, Sue, Heather, Holly, and Brian
The Teaching Home is a home-school, family-run business
operated in our home since 1980.
"Welcome to the Wonderful
World of Geography"
World Physical Geography
Written by Brenda Runkle
This one-year curriculum is appropriate for
grades 6-12. It includes a student textbook,
student activity workbook, and a teacher's guide.
Order from Geography Matters, 606-636-4678.
Physical Geography: Beginnings
A foundational part of geographical understanding
knowledge of what the physical earth is like (see last issue), as
well as how and why it came to be as it is.
For Christians, this knowledge is based on
God's Word. The
first chapters of Genesis present the facts of Creation, the Fall
of Man, the Flood, the Tower of Babel, and the division of Earth
and its inhabitants.
These accounts are more than just stories or
lessons. They give detailed and accurate scientific and
historical information that is critical to understanding the
physical features of our planet.
"In the beginning God created the heaven and
earth." Genesis 1:1
"Whereby the world that then was, being overflowed
with water, perished." 2 Peter 3:6
"So the Lord scattered them abroad from thence
upon the face of all the earth." Genesis
Online Creation Science Resources
In addition to Christian textbooks on science,
a wealth of information at the following websites.
Answers in Genesis
• Online articles listed by topic.
• Articles on Noah's Flood
• The Flood as the Major Biblical Cataclysm
"The Genesis Flood should be regarded as the
for laying down the fossil record."
Read this article at
• Plate Tectonics
• Geology Questions and Answers
Creation Super Library
Articles on all aspects of creation in 12
Geography Teaching Materials
• Christian Textbooks. Geography may be taught
integrated with other subjects from a Christian
• Books and Videos. Picture books and travel
videos give a
fuller view of the world.
• "Operation World." (See Newsletter #145.)
• Wycliffe Bible Translators' "Bright Ideas!" are
with activities that teach about cultures
• CIA World Factbook. (See Newsletter #145.)
New from Doorposts:
"For This Is Right"
A Practical Application
of the Fifth Commandment:
"Honor thy father and thy mother . . ."
A powerful tool for building a life-long
commitment to honor and obedience! 134 pages.
Download a free copy of "A Checklist for Sons
This chart offers a set of nine questions
Scripture passages to instruct and encourage children to obey God
by obeying you, their parents.
This mini-chart and the encouragement to parents
follows it, are both condensed from "For This Is Right."
19 Geography Teaching Tips
Learning activities that can make geography
meaningful for your children.
1. Map It Yourself
Help your young child make a map of your house,
yard, or a
familiar place such as a park.
• Older children can draw the map to scale on grid paper.
• Include symbols and a map key.
2. For Active Youngsters
• Make a simplified map of your community on a large poster
board or piece of cardboard. Include
your home, grocery
store, fire station, library, park, etc.
• Make streets wide enough for your child to drive on with
3. Collect Maps
Take home a park brochure with a map to help
understand what a map means in real terms.
4. Label Blank Maps
• Have your child fill in a blank map with items you have
studied (place names, topography).
• For hard-to-spell geographic names, print out a list
for younger children to choose from.
• Print free blank outline maps at
5. The Look-It-Up Habit
Develop the habit of looking up the location
of each unknown
place that you hear about: in the news, in
your reading, on
clothing or food labels, etc.
6. Link to the Map
• Place photos, missionary prayer cards, postage stamps,
around your wall map.
• Connect each with a string or wet- or dry-erasable pen
(on a laminated map) to the corresponding
• Or use removable stickers with a corresponding number.
7. Five-Minute Map Drill
Have your children take turns finding locations
on a globe
or wall map (world, country, or state) as you call them out.
The repetition of this drill will reinforce knowledge.
• See list of places to locate in our last newsletter.
8. Name that Place
Point to a random spot on a wall map or a
spinning globe and
see if you can name (or learn) the place closest to your finger.
9. 3-D Maps
Let your children make papier-mache, dough
art, or playdough
models of an area that you are studying.
• See ideas and recipes at
10. Map Placemats
• Buy laminated placemats with a map of the world or the
States to use in finding and discussing locations
eat lunch. http://www.ouraytoys.com/display.php?cat=9
• You can also take any small map to be laminated at a
• Deskpads and placemats of Israel
Teaching Home Magazine
Many home schoolers have
and support from the writers
who have contributed to The Teaching Home magazine over the last
23 years. Fifty-one Back Issues are offered for sale online.
These back issue never go out of date.
They are relevant
and applicable to your needs today.
In each issue an average of 58
home schoolers contribute:
• Practical how-to articles
• Encouraging letters
• Ready-to-use teaching
Home has been a part of my
continuing education since I started home
and I have kept every issue.
"I often go back to
old issues to find creative,
helpful hints or inspiration." Meredith C., Florida
19 Geography Teaching Tips (continued)
11. Stamp Collection
Identifying and cataloging stamps can provide
research on many countries. See
12. Play Geography Games
• Wooden, cardboard, felt, or foam map puzzles of the world
or the U.S.A.
• Color state flower, tree, bird, etc. in U.S. coloring
such as: http://RodStaffStates.notlong.com.
• Make your own trivia, "Pictionary," or "Where Am I?"
• Make and play a matching game with geographic terms on
set of cards and their definitions on another
Online Geography Glossaries
(Listed from simple to more extensive.)
• Board games such as "Take Off!"
• Computer games such as "Where in the World (U.S.A.) is
• Sources for games and activities:
Geography Matters. http://www.geomatters.com/products
13. Country Notebooks, Scrapbooks, or Files
A good way to collect information on a country
that you are
studying is to place it all in a notebook, scrapbook, or file.
• Include: brochures, photos, stamps, recipes, reports,
missionary letters, etc.
Take your family or group geocaching -- a
type of scavenger
hunt for a waterproof container bearing a "treasure."
• Use the container's exact geographic coordinates and
• GPS Field Exercises & Challenge Games
• Protect your family from ticks when out geocaching.
• Practice conducting a search and rescue operation.
15. Travel -- in Person or Vicariously
• Traveling to different areas, states, or countries is
most realistic and educational geography experience.
• Consider a short-term missionary trip as a family.
• An alternative is to "visit" different places through
study, hands-on activities, or a unit study.
• View travel videos from your library. (You may
preview these and skip any objectionable parts.)
16. Start a Geography Club
Parents can alternate teaching a co-op class
a couple of
times a month with little effort for teachers and much enthusiasm
• Include instruction, children's reports, games, and ethnic
food of the location you are studying.
See "Eat Your Way Through the USA" by Loree'
• Curriculum can be based on a textbook, countries of the
world, or your state (field trips included).
• Close with a Geography Fair (see below) or celebration.
• National Council for Geographic Education has free online
curriculum for a Geography Club at
• Home Science Tools: Earth and geology projects and videos:
17. Put on a Geography Fair
This provides an opportunity for your children
their study and work in geography.
• Include your whole support group or just one or two families.
• Work can be presented in many ways:
Graphically with a poster or display
Oral or written report
Multi-media, video, or web page design
• Judging and prizes are optional
18. Teach Map Skills while Driving
A very practical way for your children to
learn map skills
(as well as compass directions and distances) is to use them when
you are driving (or walking).
This can begin before your child is old enough
to drive and
will later enhance his driving lessons.
• Teach your children how to find your home and other
frequently visited addresses on a map.
• Teach the cardinal directions (north, south, east, and
and refer to them as you drive or walk.
• Teach your children to choose a route and estimate driving
time before leaving home for a timely, safe,
• Teach your children to find your route on a map or get
directions, distance, and driving time online.
• Teach each child to act as "navigator," telling you ahead
time the distance, direction, and street name
of your next
19. State and Local Geography
Experience geography close-up by studying,
discussing various land forms (ocean, rivers, forests, mountains,
marshes, plains, etc.) in your area.
You should be able to find information in
handbook, online, or ask your librarian to help you.
• Find information on a geologically interesting location
• Find a book that gives the source of geographical names
your city or state.
• United States Geography offers extensive information
U.S. in general and each state in particular.
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Rhea's Education Days
Grapevine Studies Bible Curriculum
AVKO Educational Research Foundation
Audio Memory: Geography Songs
Jean Welles' Worship Guitar Class
Kid's Guitar Lessons. http://kidsguitarlessons.com/home.html
Enlightened Democracy by Tara Ross
Maybe You Wear Them with Walking Shoes
Devan, 6, was helping me dress his little
sister for a
family outing to the snow. I asked him to bring me a new pair of
tights for Alyssa. Reading the package, he asked with a frown,
"Mom, don't you think Alyssa will want to play with me and run
"Yes," I replied, "That's why we're bundling
Devan's frown deepened as he exclaimed, "But,
Mom, these are
Submitted by Karen E., Oregon
God loves us.
"For God so loved the world, that He gave
His only begotten
Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have
eternal life" (John 3:16).
We have been separated from God by sin.
"For all have sinned and fall short of the
glory of God”
(Romans 3:23). “For the wages of sin is death" (Romans 6:23).
The death of Jesus Christ in our place is God's
only provision for our sin.
"He (Jesus Christ) was delivered over to death
for our sins
and was raised to life for our justification" (Romans 4:25).
We must personally receive Jesus Christ
as our own Savior and Lord.
"For by grace you have been saved through
faith; and that
not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of
works, that no one should boast" (Ephesians 2:8, 9).
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