Monday, August 1, 2011

Stack the States (or how a Canadian mom teaches US geography!)

Since I have lived in the States for almost 10 years now, you would think I would have some sort of grasp on US geography.  Wrong.  When looking at an unlabeled map, I was only able to correctly identify a handful of States!  Yes, this may be concerning for a mother who is going to homeschool this very subject...but...this is also the beauty of homeschooling, that I get to learn alongside my children.  Or, that's what I tell myself ;)

When Sofia started asking me about the United States, I needed a crash course in geography.  I turned to my iPad and downloaded a game from the App store called Stack the States.

Stack the States is basically a game that asks various questions about the different States including abbreviations, capitals, landmarks, bordering states and even state shapes.  It then gives you a choice of four states to choose your answer from.  Once you choose the correct state you can then drag and rotate the states to stack them up until they reach a checkered line.  The states are scaled in size so you learn visualize how much bigger Texas is than Delaware for instance.  If you get a 60% score you "win" a state.  With each state won, you move closer and closer to winning bonus games to unlock.

 What I didn't expect from this game is how MUCH my kids love it!  Playing with the iPad is a big privilege for our kids...but I do allow them to play this game often!  Sofia is four and a half and does really well with this.  She has trouble reading some of the questions but if I read along with her, she does great answering questions.

Since playing this game, she can correctly identify most states from their shapes and can point out on the map where the "big" states are (getting Texas, Alaska or California as a right answer is awesome because they get you to the checkered line quicker!) It's also opened up new dialogue for her and she is interested in what states people we know live in.

For 99 cents, you can't go wrong with this game.  It's a fun, animated way for kids to learn about the US map.  Normally, I don't turn to electronic games for teaching but in this case it really gives a fresh approach to geography...and it helps a Canadian mom out too!


  1. From one Nicole to another, glad you stopped by Journey to Excellence! Have a great week!

  2. Hi! Stopping by from the HHH. Have a wonderfully blessed day!

  3. Hi! "Hopping" over from the HHH. I love the geography program you are using! It looks wonderful. We are also a Catholic homeschooling family and am happy to now be a follower of your blog. :-)

    God bless,

  4. I wish I had an iphone now. :-) I wanted to encourage you this first year homeschooling. I've been doing this for 9 years, all with Sonlight. My first year I was so overwhelmed that I sent it back!!! But reordered it the next year. I was starting my son too young for Kindergarten. Anyway, just enjoy this year and don't get bogged down in the details. One day it will all be easy as breathing!