Making Geography Fun for Tweens

It’s not only easy, but making geography fun for tweens is also key to developing their interest and appreciation for middle school geography

From studying the earth’s terrain to learning where major countries of the world are, geography is an interesting topic for tweens to explore. 

Too often, though, geography gets pushed out of a busy homeschooling day because we think it takes too much time or is too boring.

But when we make geography a lot of fun, it helps our kids learn the material faster and helps them retain the information more effectively. 

Luckily, there are a lot of different ways to make geography engaging and enjoyable for middle school students.

Close up of southeastern US on globe against black background.

Try out some of these activities to liven up your homeschool geography lessons. 

Making Geography Fun for Tweens

As homeschoolers, we have the unique opportunity to make learning fun for our children. We can tailor our curriculum to meet their individual needs and interests.

This is especially true when it comes to the subject of geography, which is often overlooked.

By making geography enjoyable for middle schoolers, we can help them become better citizens of the world.

Geography-themed board games, printable scavenger hunts, and interactive websites are all great ways to bring the subject to life.

You can also use food or art projects to teach your kids about different cultures. 

With the variety of activities available below, you’ll see there are lots of easy ways to build your child’s knowledge of geography while also having a great time.

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Why We Study Geography

Geography is the study of the physical features of the earth, its atmosphere, and how humans interact with it. It is an important subject for students to learn.

When kids learn about geography, they better understand their place in the world. They realize how different cultures interact and gain an appreciation for the diversity of the world.

It can also help your middle schoolers gain a better understanding of global affairs and why certain events take place in specific regions.

Geography is more than just memorizing facts about the world; it teaches kids how to think critically, interpret data, and develop a global perspective. 

How to Teach Geography in a Fun Way

Making geography engaging for your tween doesn’t have to be difficult. The key is to make sure your lesson plan is full of hands-on activities.

If your middle school geography curriculum doesn’t include any, take the time to add some yourself.

Hands-on geography activities are a fantastic way for older children to interact with their geography studies. 

Here are some of the best ways, as a homeschooling mom, you can make middle school geography fun.

African American tween wearing a blue short sleeve shirt, smiling holding a globe in a classroom.

Geography Games

When you add games to your lesson plans, you give kids a chance to interact with the material in a non-threatening way. They get to focus on the game and forget that they’re learning.

There are many board games and online ones available to teach geography, from classic trivia, map games, to ones that are based on strategy. 

Games are the easiest way for kids to practice identifying capital cities, geographical features, and building map skills.

Some of them are so fun that you’ll want to add them to your family game nights. I can’t tell you how many times we’ve played The Scrambled States of America!

Printable Scavenger Hunts

Use internet research and an atlas to create fun scavenger hunts for your tween.

They can search for the capitals of various countries, discover interesting geography facts, or find locations based on latitude and longitude.

Scavenger hunts let kids build their critical thinking skills while also learning about the world.

Geography Through Food 

An excellent way to teach cultural geography is to make food from the region you’re studying. 

This gives your family a chance to explore the customs and cuisine of a specific region. You can compare how dishes differ from country to country.

We often had geography dinners when my kids were younger. They were one of their favorite geography activities. They loved making and eating food from a different country.

There are some cookbooks that work well for geography, like this Around the World Cookbook and Cooking Class Global Feast.

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Build a Landform

Kids think differently when they’re working with their hands. There are a number of things they can build when studying world geography.

Creating a 3D model of landforms like mountains or rivers will help them understand their physical features better. Putting together a paper mâché globe lets them practice outlining continents.

They can make a salt dough map or use cookie dough to make it edible.

When you’re studying the earth, build a volcano or use molding clay to demonstrate how mountains formed from tectonic plates colliding.

It’s easy to teach kids about geographic features when you use a hands-on activity.

Art and Geography

There are lots of fun activities you can use to incorporate art into geography.

Have your tween draw a map of the region you’re studying. You can also print out a blank map and have them use art tools to fill in the nations, rivers, and mountain ranges.

They can make flags from the countries you’re learning about or create a paper mural of something they learned in their lesson. 

Combine art with geography with these landmark chalk art projects. Tweens can recreate the famous landmarks from the areas you’re studying. 

Creative Writing

Get outside of the textbook by adding some geography-themed creative writing to your lesson plans. It’s a great addition to any geography curriculum.

Have older kids use a travel journal as a unique way to study a country. This one lets them act like they’re planning a trip and along the way, they’ll learn all kinds of facts about 30 different cities.

Let your tweens create a travel brochure to encourage someone to visit an area. They can incorporate all the fun facts they’ve learned.

Incorporate notebooking into your lessons as a way for tweens to summarize and process the information they’re learning. These country study notebooking pages are a great way to get started.

USA puzzle. Each state is a different color and has a white knob to lift up the piece.

As you can see, making geography fun for tweens isn’t that difficult. There are plenty of different hands-on activities you can do alongside your geography curriculum to get your kids excited about the subject. 

You can even head outside to add some outdoor geography activities to your day.

With these creative ways, you can bring this subject to life for your middle schoolers and get them to look at geography in a whole new way.

What is your go-to way to make geography fun for tweens and teens?

Megan Zechman
I love homeschooling! Learning is a way of life for our family. Most days you will find us exploring our Central Florida community, having fun while learning. I am constantly looking for new and interactive ways to engage my older children.
Megan Zechman
Megan Zechman
Megan Zechman

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