When my oldest son was three years old, I planned and prepared some Around the World lessons to do with him and we had such a great time doing them together. They are my favorite lessons that I’ve done because I learned so much and had an increased sense of wonder in the world around me. They were also the most work of any lessons I’ve prepared, but I planned them thoroughly with the intention to use them multiple times through my other kids and any other opportunities that might come up. And although I loved the one on one time, there were times that it would have worked better to have more kids as we tried out new games or certain activities.
So when a friend asked if I would be interested in continuing some kind of home preschool lessons for her son this summer I thought these lessons would be the perfect fit to do with my kids and a couple friends. We may not be physically traveling out of the country this summer, but through books and activities we’ll have the chance to see the world!
I’ll have individual posts for each country we cover, but here is a layout of how I do it and some of the materials and resources I use.
The first step was making passports for each of the kids so they can track their traveling. Cotton Ridge Homeschool has some awesome free printable pretend passports so all I had to do was print and assemble them! The printable also included stamps for several different countries that you can glue into their passport. It didn’t include all the countries I wanted to cover so I had to make my own for some of our lessons. I also used a date stamp to show when we went to each country.
At the start of our first lesson I read this book to introduce the kids to the concepts of maps and countries. The kids in my lessons range from 2.5 years old to 5 years old so they had varied levels of understanding prior to the lesson.
Me on the Map by Joan Sweeny is an excellent book for explaining concepts of location and maps in a very child friendly way.
We read the book while sitting next to my world map which is a vinyl decal and has a dry erase surface. We also have the US map in the same format and we love them! They come with dry erase markers, but I think it is sometimes hard to wipe off and I prefer using dry erase crayons for easier cleaning, no worries about keeping caps on, and longer use.
At the start of each lesson a child gets to use one of the crayons to draw a flight path to whichever country we’re visiting that day.
Then we add that country’s stamp into their passport, stamp it with the date stamp, and I welcome them into the country.
One of the first things I usually do after that is have the kids dress our paper doll from the country. Education.com has printable paper dolls from many different countries that I used. I cut, colored, and laminated them and added velcro dots on so we could reuse them many times, but you could also have kids color their own to keep.
Then over the course of the lesson we read several books, listen to music from the country, try foods from the culture, play games, do crafts, and more!
Click to see the lessons we’ve done:
(Links will be added and the list will be updated as we complete them. Pin this page so it’s easy to find again and check for updates!)
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