Sometimes we ask students to memorize information. Technology can help (or hurt if done poorly). For memorizing the United States of America, their region, and abbreviation I gathered resources. Some of the games I found, some I modified, and some I created. The websites are linked through a Weebly site: Geo6HMS. I normally just provide the links on Edmodo, but I wanted to be able to divide them into specific region practice.
I used the Dustbin Game from ClassTools.net for practicing the four regions.
Purpose Games are a great way to practice locations. As a teacher it is easy to set up, you upload an image and program the dots. These activities work great on Interactive Whiteboards.
I used Socrative to create formative assessments for each of the regions using images of the states. I plan on sharing the Quiz codes with my PLC.
- Northeast SOC-2821232
- South SOC-2821252
- Midwest SOC-2821272
- West SOC-2821791
- Entire United States SOC-2819624
I also downloaded many iOS apps that focused on the United States – geography, capitals, and abbreviations of the states. I made 3 overall recommendations to students on the Geo6HMS Weebly site. But there are more detailed reviews for each app:
Tap Quiz World FREE
- Tap Quiz has practice for the world, but it also includes four regions of the United States. The app gives you the name of a state and you have to tap on the correct location. For smaller states, you tap and hold to zoom in. The app is simple and free.
Stack the States $0.99
- Stack the States is both a strategy game and trivia. You earn state pieces by answering quick questions about the capital, outline, flag, or famous landmark. You want to stack the pile of states to make it to the line. Once you have won a few rounds, bonus levels start to unlock. The Map It! Level is great of people reviewing the locations of the states.
- States-N-Capitals is a basic but efficient way to to study the states and capitals. As you take the quiz, you can favorite ones that are challenging. For future attempts, you can just focus on the ones you struggled with. This is is very pink.
- Shake ‘Em Up randomly highlights one state. It shows you the name of the state and when you touch the screen it shows the capital. You just have to shake to see the next state. There are sound effects that got annoying quickly. The app does not provide anyway to challenge yourself, but it is an interesting introduction to the states.
- States Play gives you a picture and you have to select the letters to spell the place. Sometimes the image is the state, sometimes it is the capital, and other times it was the state flag. The ads at the bottom are distracting.
US States Match’Em Up $0.99
- US States Match’Em Up offers different game options. There is a matching game, a Head 2 Head mode, Pop Quiz, and Spell and Learn. The matching games distort the shapes of the states to make them square. The matching might provide more learning opportunities if people were matching the state image to the state name, instead of just image to image or word to word.
Smart Fish States Run $0.99
- The goal of Smart Fish: States Run is to move the people from location to location. When you click on a person, it asks you to identify the state, capital, or abbreviation of a state. The more answers you get correct, the more people you must move around the map. The sound effects were annoying and I did not see an easy way to mute the game.
- States shows you a map with a state highlighted. You have to unscramble the letters at the bottom to spell the state correctly. The challenge is that not all the letters are visible at once. As you use a letter, another letter will appear underneath. There are multiple modes, you can use the state abbreviations for hints.
- Enjoy Learning US Puzzle Map gives you the shape of the state. You drag it to the correct spot on the map. There are 3 different levels to challenge you: showing outline, one snaps the states into place, and one is a blank map. When it gives you the shape of the state, it also gives you the name, so you would be making a mental match between the states and their locations.
Geography Drive USA $3.99 for iPad
- Geography Drive USA is only for iPads. You drive across the United States answering trivia and playing games. There are bonus levels that will help prepare for the test. Since you can only go to states that touch, it does reinforce the relative locations of states compared to each other.
- US State Capitals Quiz does exactly what the name implies: asks the state capitals. The questions are multiple choice, and the incorrect answers are other famous cities in that state. There are no visuals except the ads.