Holly has been chugging along on her state study. This is a pretty big project and I can see this just being part of our school life until it is complete - not sure if she will fully complete it during this school year or wrap it up sometime this summer/early fall. The reason I say this is that rushed feeling of jumping from state to state is not at all enjoyable. Holly does not enjoy it either. Taking her time, really enjoying the materials and slowing down has been beneficial in retaining her knowledge and encouraging more learning.
Before beginning this project I took the time to contact the tourism department for each state and request materials from the state. At first I felt a bit guilty, but soon realized almost every state had a reason on their site 'for a school project'... which soon made me realize, kids all over the country are doing this. The packages started to arrive which built up excitement for Holly. I now store them all in a three bin organizer and we pull the materials we need for that state- read them, enjoy them, cut them up, use them to their fullest and then recycle once that state is finished. Having full color brochures, maps, articles, books and more has really brought each state to life for Holly.
For each state she has a few pages to work through that bring a bit of attention to the historical facts, population, flag, state bird, state animal, state plants, etc. There are some basic maps that she fills out and colors - where she highlights larger important lands, rivers, towns and more. As well, she does a small coloring project and labeling of states that border the state we are studying. Then she learns some on their agriculture, business, life and people. Included she also chooses a destination within that state that she would like to visit, why she would like to visit it, what she might see, where is it located and a drawing of the destination. To finish Holly creates a collage of photos from the state using the tourism materials - she highlights what was of interest to her or items I feel she should include. We store all of this in a big binder.
This project has really opened Holly's eye to where we live, what country we live in and locations of states within. She spends a lot more time reading maps. She is becoming more aware of how regions look differently and how people are all the same. So far, I am very happy with her State Study and she loves doing it... a win, win!