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Topic: Ideas for learning states....?

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Subject: Ideas for learning states....?
Date Posted: 3/8/2008 10:25 PM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2006
Posts: 91
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Does anybody have any "fun" ideas for learning the states and president names/numbers?

Thanks,

Stephanie

Date Posted: 3/8/2008 10:30 PM ET
Member Since: 9/10/2005
Posts: 4,696
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If you, as an adult can stand it, and are ok with your Kids watching it.  Animaniacs did some fun song and toon skits about these topics.

ladystyx

Date Posted: 3/9/2008 12:51 AM ET
Member Since: 10/26/2005
Posts: 438
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My kids have really enjoyed the geography CD's from audio memory.  There is one for U.S. and one for World Geography.  They have memorized states and capitals as well as world countries and general location.  Now if only they would come up with songs for world capitals we'd be in business. 

Yo Millard Fillmore is a book to help you memorize the presidents by  picture association or story association (I'm not sure what you call it).  I was able to get the pres. in my short term memory with it but it didn't stick long term.  I think I'm going to use the president song from Veritas Press with my kids but haven't gotten there yet.

When I first tried to get my kids to learn with songs they were very resistant and it didn't go well.  I'm talking about my 5th, 4th, and 2nd grade boys.  But I think my technique was off.  I tried to make it too "school-ish"  and we would work one song at a time during "school" and sing it over a couple times.  I know, I'm a geek!  LOL!!  It met with lots of eye-rolls and silliness. 

So I shelved it for what ended up being a couple of years and pulled it back out this year and just popped it in the car on band days...the only day we're ever in the car.   They LOVE it...and they claim to hate to sing. LOL!!  I had such great luck I pulled out our Skip Count tape which had gathered dust for even more years than the geography and played it in the car.  They are loving it and memorizing lots.  Heck, *I'm* memorizing lots. LOL!!

Date Posted: 3/9/2008 4:00 AM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2006
Posts: 457
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My son learned all the states and their locations from reading (and loving!) a book called The Scrambled States of America.  Fun book!

Presidents... I can't help you with that one.

~Jori

Date Posted: 3/9/2008 12:22 PM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
Posts: 662
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There are two fun Scholastic books written specifically to help kids (and anyone else) memorize presidents and states--AND they are quite silly, which makes them even better. 

  • Yo, Sacramento!  by Will Cleveland & Mark Alvarez, ISBN 0590259393
  • Yo, Millard Fillmore!  by Will Cleveland & Mark Alvarez, ISBN 0590472682

 

Date Posted: 3/9/2008 6:24 PM ET
Member Since: 3/20/2007
Posts: 931
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I second (or is it third now?) this!!!  My son has LOVED them!  (And they stick w/ him!)

 

  • Yo, Sacramento!  by Will Cleveland & Mark Alvarez, ISBN 0590259393
  • Yo, Millard Fillmore!  by Will Cleveland & Mark Alvarez, ISBN 0590472682
Date Posted: 3/9/2008 8:36 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2006
Posts: 161
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The Scrambled States of America is also produced as a card game and a video.  Both are very amusing.

Date Posted: 3/10/2008 11:25 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
Posts: 662
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Two more slightly addictive websites to help you drill states (and other geographical information):

www.travelpod.com/traveler-iq  (Traveler IQ Challenge--choose the USA Challenge option to practice states & capitals)

www.mapmsg.com/games/statetris/usa/  ("Statetris": A Tetris game using the states!)

(And, yes, I did take some time to "test" the games one more time before I posted this...)  :)

Date Posted: 3/10/2008 1:20 PM ET
Member Since: 9/18/2005
Posts: 6,947
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If you are a part of a group, here is something we have done this year:  have each child take turns learning about and presenting a state (flower, bird, motto, nickname, population, date of admission to the union, number order of admission, and any other thing you can think of).  They have a notebook they put all this information in and can refer to it anytime they want.  We have learned so much by doing this (DYK that the state drink for Nebraska is Koolaid???  :)) 

Enchanted Learning has most of this information for free.  :)

Date Posted: 3/10/2008 1:55 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2007
Posts: 163
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I definitely second Sherry's last link!  My children have been doing www.sheppardsoftware.com for several years now and they have gone from not knowing where France is to knowing what the capitals of African countries are.  They have games for US states and capitals as well as each continent's countries and capitals.  I highly recommend it- free online geography education!

Subject: Thanks so much....you are a wealth of information
Date Posted: 3/12/2008 8:39 AM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2006
Posts: 91
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Thanks for sharing such great ideas.  I knew there had to be more than just telling them "learn your states".

Blessings,

Stephanie

 

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 4:43 PM ET
Member Since: 3/20/2007
Posts: 931
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Just today, from the makers of SpellingTime, I rec'd notice of their new "BigStatesTime".  It's 25% off until March 15th.

bigstatestime.com/

JC

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 5:12 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2007
Posts: 4,588
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I got that email too JC but I choked at the thought of $30 for a 12 month subscription. And that's the sale price. If I had 2 or 3 kidlets using it at the same time maybe I would consider it.

 

Date Posted: 3/12/2008 9:25 PM ET
Member Since: 10/2/2007
Posts: 95
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Stephanie, I learned the states in alpha order by listening to my sister practice for a school program when she was in the 6th grade, I was in 4th. The song they had to learn was called Fifty Nifty United States. To this day I can recite the states in alpha order and I am 41 years old. I have never forgot that. It was fun at the time. I did a google search and found a group of 5th graders singing the song on youtube.com and the lyrics can be found that way too. (brought back a lot of memories) Maybe it will be fun for your kids too, you can sing with them!

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 8:45 AM ET
Member Since: 8/24/2006
Posts: 312
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Wow you tube has the animaniacs too I never thought to check youtube for this kind of stuff Thanks so much for the idea and yesterday we were cleaning out my daughters room and found our scrambled states of america card game I forgot i even bought it.

 



Last Edited on: 3/13/08 8:45 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/13/2008 9:14 AM ET
Member Since: 3/20/2007
Posts: 931
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I just remembered another idea.  The U.S. Mint has a wonderful kids' page!  They have activities for the 50 States Quarters and the Presidential Dollars.  They'll also send free stuff. :-)

www.usmint.gov/kids/

Have fun!

Oh, and I also learned the states in grade school w/ that song!  Man, I wish my nearly 40 y.o. brain could dig *that* out of memory!  I can still recite all the helping verbs I learned in 6th grade.  Now *that* has come in handy teaching grammar :-)  "is, are, am, was, were, have, has, had........."

About BigStatesTime - I know about the price!  I wish they still had SpellingTime for free!  I wish all their sites were free!  OR they could offer them ALL for the $30!  It is way too pricey for what they give you, IMO.

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 4:45 PM ET
Member Since: 10/26/2005
Posts: 438
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Oh, and I also learned the states in grade school w/ that song

I know that song!! LOL!!  We sang it in 4th grade choir.

I wish I had a recording of it 'cause all my kids have to go on is my horrible rendition and I'm not sure I've got some of the lyrics right (not the state part. LOL!!)  I use it quite frequently and my kids are starting to pick it up even with my off-key singing.

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 5:29 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2007
Posts: 4,588
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Google the Fifty Nifty United States and you'll find several youtube videos of it. One is very nicely done, good audio.

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 6:40 PM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
Posts: 662
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My 13-year-old was just reading over my shoulder, and she wanted to add that collecting the state quarters helped her to memorize the states, because she was constantly looking at the names seeking the ones she was missing.

Date Posted: 3/13/2008 9:43 PM ET
Member Since: 8/24/2006
Posts: 312
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I have a site bookmarked with lessons for each of the state quarters

http://www.usmint.gov/kids/

info about quarters

http://www.theus50.com/quarters-state.php

if anyone is collecting quarters.

angel



Last Edited on: 3/13/08 9:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
patticom - ,
Date Posted: 3/14/2008 10:19 AM ET
Member Since: 11/3/2007
Posts: 416
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My eldest had a jigsaw puzzle with all the U.S. states and could name and locate them all before he was 4 (he LOVED puzzles and did that one a LOT).  I don't think we ever got around to having him learn the capitals, but we could have when he got older (they were listed on the puzzle pieces).  The puzzle fell apart and my 8yo twins didn't really like puzzles so they don't know the states so well (that and they don't live in the U.S. so they don't really care LOL).  My mom just got them a new states jigsaw for Christmas though, so I'll probably start having them do it every week or so to learn them.  There's also this site, which is free and lots of fun, and has continents/nations also!!  http://www.lizardpoint.com/fun/geoquiz/usaquiz.html

Can't help you with Presidents, though.

Date Posted: 3/14/2008 12:46 PM ET
Member Since: 10/26/2005
Posts: 438
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Char,

Youtube is amazing! Thanks for the trip down memory lane.  I had forgotten more than I realized and my kids thought it was great. :-)

 

Date Posted: 3/14/2008 9:37 PM ET
Member Since: 5/27/2006
Posts: 200
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We did two states each week, last year.  I used the worksheets off of Enchantedlearning.com. <--they were free.

They have a sheet for each state, map quiz, and quiz.

I also tried to come up with some interesting facts to go along with it...including putting in where some of their fave celebs, etc came from. That worked well with my kids.

Subject: States
Date Posted: 3/17/2008 10:31 AM ET
Member Since: 3/7/2008
Posts: 114
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We have been collecting postcards from each state. 

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