North Star Geography by Tyler H. Hogan
North Star Geography by Tyler H. Hogan contains sixteen units that cover geography skills, physical geography and human geography. Topics include: what is geography, maps, and navigation, earth’s structure, topography, lithosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, biosphere, survival and society, environmental stewardship, agriculture, culture, heritage, and government.
My favorite part of the curriculum is that everything you need has already been prepared for you. There’s a student reader, planning schedule, hands-on activities, note-taking pages, quizzes and much more! Everything you need to get started, teach the course, and evaluate your child’s learning.
The student reader includes text and color or black and white illustrations as well as information for the teacher. An introduction discusses the reasons for studying geography, which is extremely important! It gives the students a motivation to learn. The student reader also includes scheduling information with the option of covering the textbook in one year, two years, or one semester.
Next, I like the hands-on activities for each unit. For instance, students are given instructions for determining latitude and longitude using the stars, creating a tectonic plate puzzle, and making a volcano using both chemical and physical reactions. Lots of fun projects that will help the students enjoy learning geography.
In addition to the hands-on projects, students are required to create and label all types of maps including outline maps, thematic maps, political maps, and physical maps. By the time the students are done this course, they will be familiar with all the major counties, cities, and landmarks? of the world.
The author also provides a note-taking page which reminds me of college courses that I took. I loved it when the textbook included a note-taking book. This forces the student to read the material, pick out the most important information, and write it down, making it easier to learn the material.
Next, the author includes a list of places and terms that the student should memorize and be able to locate on a map.This is a very handy feature!
Another feature I like is the graphic organizers. Included are organizers for world, continent, country, cultural, elected officials, candidate comparison, and regional facts.
To encourage critical thinking, the author includes research questions for each area of the world. For instance, when studying Africa, students are encourage to research and discover the answer to the following questions: What was apartheid? When was it in effect in South Africa? Who was Nelson Mendela, and why was he significant? What portion of Africa’s surface area is desert? Which desert is the smallest? Which African countries have sizable diamond mines? An answer key is included.
And that’s not all! There are outline maps, reference maps, a glossary, quizzes, a final exam and answer keys, grading rubrics and a report card template in excel format. It’s all planned for you!
This is a very comprehensive geography course that is not only thorough, but it is also fun! This is my kind of teaching resource. Congratulations, Tyler, a job well done!
Available in hard back with companion CD or as a digital download. Watch YouTube Video for more information.