Cross-posted from Love2learn Blog
We're preparing to participate in our local homeschool group's Geography Bee as part of the National Geography Bee. My oldest participated last year while #2 (the geography buff of the family) watched eagerly from the side-lines. He's finally old enough this year, and we just had to miss the practice round (my nephew Ruben's funeral was the same day - please keep him and his family in your prayers) so I'm putting some extra effort into sources of Geography practice for both of our participants. I did come up with a little incentive - especially for them to work together. We promised to take either of them out to ice cream if they make it into the final round of our local homeschool group's Bee. But if they BOTH make it into the final round, they get a bigger treat. :)
We've always had a lot of maps, map puzzles, atlases and other geography books around. These are some websites (mostly quizzes) which my children love and seem to be highly motivating. They're also an easy way for me to keep up just a little bit with my kids on this project. Since I thought others might be interested...
GeoSpy Game (this is where I learned the locations of all the countries of Africa!)
GeographyZone (country quiz - compete with others and yourself - this tracks scores by state and country - but practice at GeoSpy first so you don't bring the score down too much - it's hard! - especially the islands in Oceania, whew!)
Fun Brain Geography Quizzes (Practice Capitals of States and Countries - and much more - on several difficulty levels)
Info Please Geography Quizzes (Quizzes and Crossword puzzles on a variety of geographic topics)
Matt Rosenburg's Geography Quizzes (These are tough!)
Online Maps and Puzzles (hat tip Ana Braga-Henebry)
I don't remember where I read this, but in any case, keep in mind that the purpose of the Geography Bee is to get more people to study and care about Geography, which has been long-neglected in schools. This means that parents should make an effort to do some learning themselves and everyone should remember that any extra effort put into Geography for the sake of the Bee is a very positive thing. It should be fun and a source of motivation, not a cause of stress and pressure.