Back in October, the children took part in a Geography fair and really enjoyed the whole thing. We focussed our project on Slovakia (you can read about it here) and the children loved the whole process of putting together the facts and figures as well as learning about Slovakia and how it differs from our country, as well as having some similarities.
I had planned to continue doing similar projects with them but just hadn’t quite managed to get around to it. That was until we recieved our explorer kit from Geo Journey. Geo Journey is a monthly subscription box that takes you on a journey around the world with its two cute characters, Geo and Atlas. The explorer kit caused great excitement when it arrived and it included a fab messneger style bag, a personalised letter introduing Geo and Atlas and their first adventure. There’s a large wall map, a travel journal, passport, stickers, photos and an activity booklet. You even get a (replica) travel ticket!
The first pack is all about Geo and Atlas and we learn a little about their home city and their plans to travel down to London to make their first trip overseas. There is a lovely activity booklet included and this was a great way to see how much the children had retained from the letter that we had read together. We then set about sticking in the stickers and marking on the map the first destination of London.
I then decided to use the Geo Journey as an excuse to do a bit about ‘where we live’. We have touched upon the idea of us being in a part of Manchester, and how that is in the UK, but I wanted to drill it down for them a little more and explain how we often change our description of where we live depending on where we are and who we are talking to. We talked about our village, and the town it is in, and that in turn is in the city of Manchester. We talked about where that was in the UK and that the UK is part of Europe etc. I printed various maps off for them, and as each map zoomed out we kept marking our spot on them. This was a good way of getting the children to see just how big the world is and where we occupy a little spot.
We then moved on to some more generic UK facts. We used a template from Home School Share and we wrote about the population, language, currency and capital city of the UK. They were able to answer a couple of these without referring to Alexa for the information. We also coloured in the flag too. We stuck it all together to make a simple lapbook and then talked a little more about York (where Geo and Atlas are from) and looked at that on a map.
We then had a guess about Geo and Atlas’ next destination and had a think about what they might see on the journey there and how a dog and an owl might even travel from York to London and then onwards!
I’m really impressed with Geo Journey so far, and feel like it’s going to be perfect inspiration for us as we look at more and more countries as Geo and Atlas travel around. Geography is such a big topic to tackle and it’s one of those that I think I have over thought a little. Geo Journey seems to be a really fun way to tackle geography at the moment, and I am hopeful that there are going to be some really interesting and exciting ways that we can cover the many different facets of the topic. I’ve noted some ideas below how you could use the first box in your own home environment and I think it would be perfect too for a bigger group activity.
- Think about what you might need to pack if you were joining Geo and Atlas on their journey
- Talk about York and your own home town/city. How far apart are they? Are there any similarities? What makes a city a city?
- Trace the path of the River Ouse on a map. Does your home city have a river? Is it as long as the Ouse?
- What are some of the key sites of your home city and of York?
- Write a story about Atlas and Geo’s adventures to London.
- What did Atlas and Geo see in London? You could role play this in a bigger group.
- Set up a train station role play (Twinkl have some great resources for this).
- You could buy tickets (introducing maths concepts),
- Calculate travel times, how long left until the train departs etc
- Complete a wider exercise on the UK. There are plenty of lapbook templates available
I’m really excited to work on this with D and E over the coming year; it’s a really engaging way for us to learn about the world around us and I’m looking forward to getting a bit more inventive with some of our activities to accompany this box.
You can read more about Geo Journey here or even subscribe to start your own adventures.