Geography Nook & Simple European Countries Unit

We are still banging away at our school room, although we have given up setting ourselves ‘finish by’ dates because they keep coming and going with alarming regularity and yet the school room still isn’t finished.  The geography area is however and it is being put to great use with my easy peasy European geography unit.  Actually calling it a unit is a bit of a stretch but I’m determined that my children do a little better than these poor people at filling in a European map (view without children, there are a few swear words present – it nevertheless is a very, very funny read which had me crying with laughter.  Thanks go to Ticia for the link).  And yes, I would have fitted right into that group with ease, geography being my poorest subject!

Anyway, here is our geography nook:


We have a huge wall map of the world, a shelf for educational DVDs above, a unit to hold all our geography games, maps and books as well as our globe and a nice collection of National Geographic magazines.

One slightly closer up of the unit:



Some of the books
Some of the books
Games and other learning resources
Games and other learning resources

And the map:



Our geography nook was completed just in time to be helpful for studying our easy peasy European Geography unit.  It gives the children a point of reference for each country before they research using their computer.  It also allows A5 and B3 to be part of it in a small way.

I had contemplated doing a huge European geography unit over the summer, but for now I’ve shelved that idea in favour of Leonardo DaVinci.  Well, can you blame me?  DaVinci promises to be highly entertaining as well as educational.  European countries, not so much.  However, I did want the children to experience a small amount of European culture and I also wanted them to at least be able to point out the countries on a map.

So here it is.  Claire’s easy peasy European geography unit in six simple steps:

1) Write out some information you want your children to research about each country:


2) Cut strips into squares.  One piece of information on each piece.  Fold and place in a basket:


3)  The children take it in turns to choose a piece of paper, continuing until there are no more left.

4)  Using the resources available to them (above) and their personal computers, the children research the answers to the questions on the paper:



5) Then gather children to give an impromptu 5 minute presentation:


6) Repeat with other European countries.  Should take under 30 minutes, start to finish, each day.  See, easy peasy!