Let’s Get Planning: Our Fabulous Fifty States

I’m doing a Seven Quick Takes post today, but will link it up on Friday once Kelly has the link-up going.  Here is the second unit study–please be advised, I am going in no particular order.

We picked up, somewhere along the way, a states and capitals bingo game.  I wasn’t able to find the exact one, but this is very similar.  Seems like a fun way to learn them, and I could use a refresher anyway.
 U.S. States and Capitals Bingo (CDPCD8913) Category: Educational Games
This set is a bit pricey at $34, however I found a number of design your own bingo cards sites, like this one and this one, if you prefer to DIY it.
How the States Got Their Shapes 
Netflix is a tool that I often over look when lesson planning, but I discovered the series “How the States Got their Shapes” through one of their ad banners and decided I had to use it for our unit study.  I have watched most of season 1 and it is so interesting and entertaining, at the same time, I am learning more than I ever knew about state boundaries and how our history shaped them.  If you don’t have Netflix, you can watch full episodes right on the History channel website.  There are even bonus features.  I don’t know that all the episodes are there, but there is still a ton of good information.  Barnes & Nobles carries the book upon which the series is based.  Regardless of where you watch, check out Krazy Kuehner Days blog for worksheets corresponding to each episode.
We are going to eat our way across the USA!  I started doing this with the kids a few years ago, but well, things got complicated and we never got very far.  I’m hoping to make it all the way through this year.  I will have to do some adapting to meet all our food allergy requirements, but as I do, I will post the modifications.  Another great resource, and my inspiration for doing this the first time, is Jessica’s State by State Study collection of yummy recipes.
States & Capitals, Twin Sisters
I picked up a few audio cassettes from Twin Sisters at the homeschool conference.  What better way to learn than listening as you motor along to this place and that.  I’m excited to see that iTunes has the albums available for download, since we only have a tape player in the car.  I am going to add it to the kids mp3 player playlist.  I normally only allow audiobooks on there, but this is for school so it’s all good. 
For the written portion of this unit study, I am going to purchase and print Catholic Inspired’s One Nation Under God notebooking collection.  I really like that Jennifer created a great research project about our country with a Catholic twist.  Check out her other printables, too, so much good stuff!  I’m hoping I am able to get a printer and set it up before school starts up again.
50 States (Fandex Family Field Guides)
To help in completing the notebooking pages, I have assembled a collection of fun fact resources.  First, I have the 50 States Fandex, these are always so much fun to use.  We are also going to use Exploring the States by the Clever Factory, Travel the Great States by School Zone, All About America Sticker Book, and the Discover America State by State alphabet books.  I was unable to find a link to the sticker book we have (it’s been around for awhile) but I discovered this Dover sticker book and think I will pick one up as well.
Finally, we are going to have a license plate scavenger hunt.  We did this a few years ago and found every state except Hawaii.  There are many different versions of this and I actually plan on using two printables for this activity.  Mom’s Minivan has a simple printout of all the state’s names.  We are going to use it to keep a tally of how many we see of each state–our home state not withstanding–and then graph it at the end of the year.  iMom has a very nice version of the license plate game that I am so excited to find.  It is great because it has a picture of each license plate that the kids mark off as they spot them.  This is great because at least we know what we are searching for while zooming down the interstate.
That’s our geography plan in a nutshell.  Any great state study resources I missed?


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