My Wonderful World is excited to announce the debut of a guest blogger series! In this program we provide a forum for those actively "doing" geography to weigh in on the issues and share their personal experiences. We are thrilled to have Marissa Giamo, author of Spin the Globe Adventures (you may remember the piece I wrote about her first book on Australia) as our inaugural guest blogger. In this first post, Marissa describes her work bringing geography to life through children's stories. Enjoy!
Interested in contributing as a guest blogger? Please contact Sarah at firstname.lastname@example.org.
American Students interested in Geography??? Is it possible?
Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Contrary to the many newspaper articles listing American students at the bottom of the list for their knowledge of other countries, I see clues everyday that kids are interested in Geography.
The reaction I got was the one that I was hoping for. They were very interested and very curious. They listened intently to the whole story and asked questions. They asked how long it took to travel to different countries. They were interested in finding out about differences in language and the animals. Not only did I not get booed, but they actually asked me to stay longer to talk about Geography!
Every classroom that I have visited since has been the same
or better. The third graders I read to a couple of weeks ago had questions about what it
was like to visit Australia. (The book I read to them was about Australia.) They liked hearing about some of the nicknames that “Aussies” have for things
like “G’day” and “lollies” (candy). When I asked which country they would like
to visit, every student had their own answer and a reason why. Some of the boys wanted to visit Russia, one girl wanted to see the Taj Mahal in India
Even outside of the classroom I hear kids asking their parents curious questions. Mommy, what language is that man speaking? Or, What country do tigers live in?
The list goes on and on.
So, yes, it is possible. American kids are interested. From my experience, I find students are just looking for opportunities to discuss other countries and their people. They are curious about the world. They are curious about Geography!