Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Kids Wednesday: Learning about New York

My son decided that he was going to learn about all the states at a very young age.  He liked the maps and the puzzles which quickly moved to state capitols.  We decided that we were going to learn more about each state of the summer and school breaks.  He started with Maryland, Delaware, Virginia and Pennsylvania which are the states that we live by and have visited.  After finishing those, he decided on New York and Florida where his grandparents live.

We started with New York.  I got lots of books about New York both fiction and non-fiction so that we can learn in new and interesting ways about the state.  I usually get some books from the NEA list by State.  Sadly, most were about the city and not a lot about the rest of the state which is where all of our family lives. 

The list included the following books for fun options:

  • New York
    • How Pizza Came to Queens by Dayal Khalsa
    • Hessian's Secret Diary by Lisa Banim
    • Tar Beach by Faith Ringold
    • Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume
    • Adventures of Ali Baba Bernstein by Johanna Hurwitz
    • And Still the Turtle Watched by Sheila MacGill-Callahan
    • The Cricket in Times Square by George Selden
    • Ruth Law Thrills a Nation by Don Brown
    • The Adventures of Taxi Dog by Debra Barracca
    • When Jessie Came Across the Sea by Amy Hest
    • The Matchlock Gun by Walter D. Edmonds
    • Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder
    • Gila Monsters Meet You at the Airport by Marjorie Weinman Sharmat
    • Hattie and the Wild Waves by Barbara Cooney
    • Hey, Al by Arthur Yorinks
    • Lyle, Lyle Crocodile by Bernard Waber
    • Remember Me to Harold Square by Paula Danziger

After reading the library books, my son was really interested in the Brooklyn Bridge so we got another one about that which was still in the pile of books to be read.  We like to have some short ones and some long ones so that he is kept reading when he wants to read a certain kind of book.  We add and subtract books based on what is the most interesting.

We also got the fact books about New York State and all of the things that we needed to reference.  These books all lay things out differently so it is nice to have options especially since they are all from the library.

We also have our 50 State Book and the 50 States Fandex which we find a lot of information.  The book was purchased at the Dollar Tree and I got the State Fandex at a yard sale so those are great resources to look for at low prices to keep at home!

My favorite book because it included lots of fact in an easy to read format and was about thge whole state was the E is for Empire book.  In the back of the book, there were questions and answers.  Those made it is a great discussion that night at dinner as well as the reading we had done during the day.

I also use the wonderful resource from Enchanted Homeschooling Mom that gives you a nice outline of things to learn about the state with a great cover with a picture of the state and a nice reminder page that gives the different pictures of the flower, bird and others colored in.

There is one sheet to practice writing including a page to complete about the state and the capitol.

A page about the flag and matching the colors to the colors there.  The insides of most of the flags are hard to color so I normally help out and color with the markers that my son picks out where he tells me to color.

There is a page about the whole state which usually gets the top filled out at the beginning of our learning and it is done in three parts because my son needs to have a little break in between to try to put in his best work.

There is a sheet about the state outline and where it is on the US Map, one with the state bird, state flower and state landmark.  The first thing that we always do is cut out the circles and glue them on the sheets that they are ready to be labeled, colored and information written.  These can be done one at the time or batched by different thing like we do them. Here are a few pictures of the finished product.

The last thing that we do is the puzzles and the door hanger.  My son likes to hang up the door hanger on the front door when we finish so that my husband knows that we are done with the state.  It is a great exercise to do over the summer so the kids focus on something like school work and learn fun and different things about the states that they might not otherwise known.

I love using lots of free resources to get into the details of the states and learn lots more information without having to buy many items with the use of the internet and the library with a little planning, we have been able to learn lots of information about the state and its history.  I hope that you use some of these resources and others to learn more about your state and others across the wonderful United States.  I know that we have enjoyed our learning and can't wait to learn some more!!

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