January 06, 2011

State Study and a Pocket Naturalist 'State-Specific' Guide Give-Away



We really enjoyed learning about the states. That's why we kind of left it as an open-ended project. I mean, learning never has to end - right? Neither does the fun. The cool thing about geography is that it goes hand in hand with nature, also. My kids enjoyed researching what types of animals, birds, plants and insects lived in the other states - and even drew some of them on their state information pages in their state notebooks we created (there's an example above of Texas).



Waterford Press has a really nice line of state-specific "Pocket Naturalist Guides" for each state that are laminated, handy to use, and fold out with glossy color photos and information. They sent us a sample of the Texas guides for: Butterflies and Moths, Birds, Wildlife, Trees and Wildflowers, and Seashore Life.



If you are out on a nature walk, you can stick one of these in your pocket (and not worry that the weather will bother it) - and pull it out when you spot a creature you can't identify.

Keep reading below to see how you can win your own set from Waterford Press!

While we aren't really doing much work on researching other state info right now, we love getting our books out when we take road trips, go on vacations, or get mail/postcards from people that live in other states.

Below are some tips, teaching tools, and links that will make your state studies fabulous:

* Create a State Notebook:
Here's a link to the post I did about our State Notebooks
Eventually, I'll also link up a free PDF to use for this... after I move to WP!
50 states notebook Squidoo for more ideas

* Include Nature:
Here's my big Nature as a Teaching Tool post link

* Collect State Magnets from the places you go (or buy the set online - cheaper!)
State Magnets
State Stickers

(note: Scrapbooking stickers are the best, but by far the most expensive. Sometimes you can find sets at teacher supply stores, which also aren't always cheap. I have also gotten a tip from my friend Bev that Highlights Magazine occasionally carries them. You can get flags or state shape stickers - even state seals!)

* Include food!
Cook some 'regional' or state-specific dishes while you learn about the other places in the USA you might not have visited. This was one of our favorite activities when we studied "States and Regions" with Konos. You can get the USA Cookbook and other State study supplements at Discount Homeschool Supplies.

* Join a postcard swap
This is something we are doing this year. We joined a homeschool Yahoo Group as did 50 other moms from each state. We all agreed to mail a postcard to each participant and the project lasts for almost the entire year. I just ordered my postcards in bulk online for this assignment - since March is our month and I wanted to be prepared before the baby got here. The kids will help me scribble out all 50 addresses between now and our ship-date!

* Write the state governor of states you plan to visit or move to. Who knows, maybe you'll get a reply letter with a state seal?!

* Learn the postal abbreviations for each state (much more handy than Capitals)
My friend Joy at Five J's has some great state stuff:
A free e-book teaching about the states and their postal abbreviations
An interactive practice page for postal abbreviations

* Get free online guides
For Texas, the brochure website of choice is TravelTexas.com - I LOVE this site! Most states have a tourism industry and will send you free visitor information and maps if you request it either online or by the phone. If you aren't in Texas, do a keyword search online or call the chamber of commerce for the state's capital city or state visitor's information bureau. You can also check out what national parks are in different states and visit their websites to see photos of the terrain.

* Don't forget to play:
We have puzzles and flashcards (Target, Chick Fil A, Wal-Mart, Teacher Supply store) that we use to help keep the geography fresh... and it's a great way to start with the little ones, too. If you find a great deal on them, you can even buy extra sets of flashcards to cut up and glue in your state books or other related projects. Big activity books that include state pages and crosswords are fun - you can buy multiples of these to cut and paste, also. Sometimes they have funny facts that you won't get in more serious textbooks.

Some of our Fave Geography Books:
The Armadillo from Amarillo State-by-state Guide (United States Of America) Don't Know Much About the 50 StatesSmart About the Fifty States (Smart About History)

Are you a state-flavored naturalist or a homeschool mom wanting to teach your kids more about the states? Or are you just interested in keeping up with what types of flora and fauna live in your home state?



If you would like a set of your own Pocket Naturalist Guides, here's how you can win them (#1 is mandatory, each number after is optional and only counts once - except for the tweets which count once daily):

1. Visit the Waterford Press Website and tell me what 5 guides you would order if you won.
2. Share this post on your facebook page.
3. Tweet this post once daily. "@sprittibee is giving away 5 Pocket Naturalist Guides for your #homeschool nature/state studies : http://bit.ly/hxTkWH (ends Jan 16)"
4. Blog about this post (counts as 5 entries).
5. Join my Google Friends in the sidebar or sign up for my RSS/email feed.

This give-away will close on the 15th of January. Winner will be chosen on Random.org and must provide a shipping address or a runner up will be picked for the prize.

56 comments:

Joy said...

I would order 5 of the NC guides. The 2 that talk about the Great Smokies, Butterflies & Moths, Trees and Wildflowers and the Wildlife ones.

Joy said...

I tweeted about it!

Joy said...

i follow you by the google friends1

Joy said...

shared it on facebook!

Shannon said...

Hi Heather! Thanks for this giveaway!

I would order the following:

Nevada Trees & Wildflowers, Texas Trees & Wildflowers, Yellowstone Trees & Flowers, Yellowstone Wildlife, and Washington Trees & Wildflowers

Shannon said...

Shared on FB! :o)

Shannon said...

I'm your Google Friend and a Follower :o)

Cindy said...

Oh, I'd want North Carolina Wildlife, North Carolina Trees & Wildflowers, North Carolina Butterflies & Moths, North Carolina Birds, and Great Smoky Mountain Trees & Wildflowers. Pick me!

Cindy said...

TWeeted: http://twitter.com/Getalonghome/statuses/23212180715339777

Cindy said...

I'm an rss subscriber.

H-Mama said...

Oh how fun! Texas would be #1, of course. ;) LA, OK, NY, and FL.

Marilyn said...

What a great resource...I'd split my five between the PA and VA resources...home and the grandparents house!

VA Birds, Wildlife, Trees and Wildflowers as well as PA Birds, Trees and Wildflowers.

mlhwhite@gmail.com

Jen @ Happy Little Homemaker said...

All 3 michigan books plus the florida seashore life & trees/flowers.

Jen @ Happy Little Homemaker said...

tweeted http://twitter.com/#!/HappyLHomemaker/status/23356571870302208

Jen @ Happy Little Homemaker said...

i follow via rss.

Jamie said...

Hi!! I'd order:
Eastern backyard birds
Great Smoky Mountains Trees and Wildflowers
Roadside Wildflowers
Ohio Butterflies and Moths
Ohio Trees and Wildflowers

(I'd love to order more, they look so fun!!)
Thanks for the opportunity!

Jamie said...

I shared on facebook also!! Thanks again!!

LeslieP said...

I would get the three Louisiana guides and probably the Arkansas Bird and Arkansas Tree guides.

LeslieP said...

I follow!

momof3 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
momof3 said...

Thanks for the post! Sounds like fun! I would order TN Birds, TN Trees and Wildflowers, Great Smokey Mtn. Trees and Wildflowers, GSM Birds and Arkansas Wildlife.

momof3 said...

I posted a link on facebook...

Cindy said...

I blogged about it here: http://www.highcountrymomsquad.com/freebie-friday/

Cindy said...

I blogged about it here: http://www.highcountrymomsquad.com/freebie-friday/

2

Cindy said...

I blogged about it here: http://www.highcountrymomsquad.com/freebie-friday/

3

Cindy said...

I blogged about it here: http://www.highcountrymomsquad.com/freebie-friday/

4

Cindy said...

I blogged about it here: http://www.highcountrymomsquad.com/freebie-friday/

5

Stretch Mark Mama said...

I'd get the Oregon and California sets -- we love to take hikes to the area waterfalls and we always see trees and plants that we can't identify. I've always wanted a pocket guide to toss in my backpack. :)

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Hmmm. . .let's see. . . I'd love the Alabama birds and trees & wildflowers. I'd also like Florida seashore life, Tennesse birds, Tennessee trees & wildflowers. What a neat giveaway! Thanks!

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Blogged here:

http://www.hopeisthewordblog.com/2011/01/07/pocket-naturalist-guides-give-away/

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Blogged here:

http://www.hopeisthewordblog.com/2011/01/07/pocket-naturalist-guides-give-away/

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Blogged here:

http://www.hopeisthewordblog.com/2011/01/07/pocket-naturalist-guides-give-away/

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Blogged here:

http://www.hopeisthewordblog.com/2011/01/07/pocket-naturalist-guides-give-away/

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Blogged here:

http://www.hopeisthewordblog.com/2011/01/07/pocket-naturalist-guides-give-away/

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

I'm new to Twitter, but I think I tweeted! :-)

Phyllis said...

I would pick the four for Tennessee since we are moving there in a few months and everything will be new to us. I would get the fifth one as one in Maryland since that is where we live now.

jdjmcc said...

I would love the Pennylvania Birds,also the Butterflies+Moths and the Trees+Wildflwers. The other two would be Alabama Birds and the Trees+Wildflowers. My mom lives thereand we visit once a year. It'd be fun to take these and explore down there!
Thank you,Jess
jdjmcc@aol.com

jdjmcc said...

I follow you on Google Friend!
I really enjoy your blog,but we won't be mad if we don't hear much from you over the next couple of months.Just take care of yourself and enjoy your new baby:) Jess
jdjmcc@aol.com

carlisle clan conversation... said...

I would order the 5 Texas guides you did...yeah for Texas homeschoolers. We don't live in Houston, so I wouldn't need that one.

Kympossible said...

I would order: Maryland & DC Birds; Pennsylvania Birds; Pennsylvania Butterflies and Moths; Virginia Wildlife; and Virginia Birds

Kympossible said...

I am already following you using Google, and just did a blog entry about this giveaway - http://homeschoolblogger.com/kympossible/2011/01/state-study-ideas-and-giveaway/

Mom2xamj said...

Thanks for the chance to win this! I would choose the two: Mississippi Birds and Mississippi Trees & Wildflowers since we recently moved here. And three from New Jersey, because that's were I from: New Jersey Birds, New Jersey Butterflies & Moths and New Jersey Trees & Wildflowers

Mom2xamj said...

I tweeted about it!

Amy @ Hope Is the Word said...

Tweeted today! :-)

Gwen Toliver said...

The 5 Texas books - would probably skip the Houston one. Although, it'd be hard to choose since we do lots of travel. Great resource. Btw, I'm not familiar with that Lynne Cheney book - looks like a good one. We also like the Holling C. Holling books for Geography.

Gwen Toliver said...

And I'm a follower :)

Meghan said...

THe 5 guides I'd love are:

TN Great Smoky Mnt. Birds,
TN Great Smoky Mnt. Trees & Wildflowers
TN Birds
TN Wildflower & Birds
and a NC guide (since our cabin is in the smoky's in NC)

Meghan
megtucker04@gmail.com

Meghan said...

I just shared on my FB page :)

www.facebook.com/tuckerstaketennessee

Meghan
megtucker04@gmail.com

Meghan said...

I tweeted :)

@meghantucker

Meghan

Meghan said...

I follow you via GFC -of course! Wouldnt have it any other way :)

Meghan

Meghan said...

I subscribe via email :)

Meghan

carol said...

I would order the Washington State Guides! We are studying Washington State History for 4th Grade this year!

Meranda said...

Posted on my facebook. http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/meranda.huffman

Meranda said...

I would order all of the Washington state guides~

Meranda said...

I tweeted. @merandabluan

Meranda said...

I follow you by both google friends and email.

 

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