Tour the United States and travel the countries of the world each week with the River Houses.
Many homeschoolers review the U.S. states and the nations of the world each year, and your River Houses reference library includes a current world almanac, a world atlas, and a history encyclopedia that make these reviews fun and easy. We go through the states in the traditional order of admission to the Union (almanac page 453), so this week’s state, with a link to its official website, is:
- Ohio (1 March 1803, the 17th state) — The Buckeye State. Capital: Columbus. Ohio appears on page 583 in your almanac, and on plates #41 and #142 in your atlas. Name origin: “Iroquois word for ‘fine or good river’” (almanac page 455).
❡ You can do a thousand things with the state of the week, using your reference library as a starting point. Find the state bird with your almanac and look it up in your bird guide. Trace the state’s outline with your atlas. Read the almanac’s one-paragraph history aloud each week. Using each state’s official website (above), find and copy the preamble to that state’s constitution into a commonplace book over the course of the year. Practice math skills by graphing each state’s population and area. Look up the famous state residents listed in your almanac either online or at the library. The possibilities are endless, they can be as simple or as complex as you wish, and they can be easily adjusted according to each student’s age and interests.
This week’s countries, with links to their official websites, are:
- Ghana (English), in West Africa. Capital: Accra.
- Greece (Greek and English), in southeastern Europe. Capital: Athens.
- Grenada (English), in the West Indies. Capital: St. George’s.
- Guatemala (Spanish only), in Central America. Capital: Guatemala City.
These all appear in your current almanac, atlas, and history encyclopedia as well. For example, you’ll find the main entries for Greece on almanac page 780, atlas plates #72 and #133, and history encyclopedia page 551, with illustrations, flags, and other mentions available through the indexes in each volume. Your history encyclopedia in particular provides richly illustrated accounts of the history of Greece all through chapter three.
❡ Read and think critically: The country links above go to official websites, which are not always in English and which may well be propagandistic in one way or another, thus offering older students a good opportunity to practice their critical reading and thinking skills.