Map image from National Geographic Atlas of the World, Ninth Edition
Building a strong “geo-vocabulary” is an important part of learning geography. But simply memorizing terms and place locations can be tedious and even boring. One solution to this learning challenge is to turn the task into a game in which students take charge of their own learning. For example, students can participate in an atlas-based scavenger hunt to learn new information and also become more familiar with the atlas as an important tool of geography.
Conducting a Geo-Scavenger Hunt
a) Divide students into teams of two or three. Then provide each team with several atlases and copies of the handout.
b) Explain to students that their task is to use the atlases and the clues provided in the handout to identify 26 place locations that begin with the letters of the alphabet – A to Z.
Geo-Scavenger Hunt Key
F: Faroe Islands
J: James River
M: Marquesas Islands
N: Nile River
O: Ob River
P: Paraná River
Q: Queen Maud Land
R: Rhine River
T: Thames River
U: Ucayali River
V: Viti Levu
W: Weddell Sea
Y: Yalu River
Extending the Activity
a) Distribute blank world physical maps.
b) Have students use the atlases to locate and label each of the place locations identified in the Geo-Scavenger Hunt on blank world maps.
Bring the exciting competition of the National Geographic Bee to your school! Take advantage of the early-bird registration; the $100 fee includes contest materials and prizes. Schools with financial need can apply for discounts here.
Test Your Geography IQ
Can you answer these video questions from the 2015 National Geographic Bee Championship? Questions from Pharrell Williams, Wynton Marsalis, and National Geographic Explorer Fredrik Hiebert will test your knowledge of the world.
How to Help
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Teachers can use these activities in the classroom to prepare students for the bee!
Simply memorizing terms and place locations can be tedious and even boring. One solution is to make the task fun with an atlas-based scavenger game.
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