Learn for Excellence:  for those who will go far

About My Geography Program

Our first and major emphasis is on Mathematics and English reading comprehension,
writing, spelling and vocabulary. However, our children are terribly lacking in general
knowledge of the world they live in. From the experience I have had, most children
cannot even find Salinas, CA on a large wall map of California -- and most of them were
born here and/or live here.

I have found that by using only 5-10 minutes of each lesson, I can teach them a great
deal of geography. They love it. I have a large wall map of California, another of North
America, and another of the world. At the end of each tutoring session -- the last 5-10
minutes of the hour -- we play a simple game, similar to a spelling bee, in which all
the kids present compete in finding points on one of the maps.

On the California map, there are around 100 points they learn to find. This includes about 30
cities -- all the major cities and many smaller ones; about 15 valleys, including the major
valleys like Death Valley, the San Joaquin and Sacramento valleys; all the major mountain
peaks, lakes, and so on.

On the North America map, they learn to find all the countries -- this includes all of
Central American and the Caribbean region, the northern coast of South America;
and many other important features, all the major bodies of water, etc.

On the world map, which is in the large waiting room area, they learn to find all the continents,
major bodies of water, many countries and major cities. They learn the largest 5 islands in the
world, and other important points such as the Strait of Gibraltar, the Suez Canal, the Bering
Strait, the English Channel, and many more.

As we do this, the kids gradually learn all the major geographical types, such
as continents, islands, peninsulas, oceans, lakes, rivers, mountains, and so on.

All this is possible in just the last few minutes of each hour. I have found this to be a valuable
addition to the education in math and English which I am able to give to the kids. In fact,
after just a few months here, most of our kids know more about geography than their parents.

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