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This page features help and resources for the US History I geography standards unit, as well as help for 5th grade World Geography  students and parents.  Even though I have moved with my students to 6th grade, this page will remain on the site as a resource.  Other students, parents, and teachers are more than welcome to use the page as well!

Physical Regions of North America

Click here for another copy of the physical regions of North America map

Geographic regions’ locations and physical characteristics
Coastal Plain
– Located along the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico
– Broad lowlands providing many excellent harbors
Appalachian Highlands
– Located west of the Coastal Plain, extending from eastern Canada to western Alabama; includes the Piedmont
– Old, eroded mountains (oldest mountain range in North America)
Canadian Shield
– Wrapped around the Hudson Bay in a horseshoe shape
– Hills worn by erosion and hundreds of lakes carved by glaciers
Interior Lowlands
– Located west of the Appalachian Mountains and east of the      Great Plains
– Rolling flatlands with many rivers, broad river valleys, and grassy hills
Great Plains
– Located west of the Interior Lowlands and east of the Rocky Mountains
– Flat lands that gradually increase in elevation westward; grasslands
Rocky Mountains
– Located west of the Great Plains and east of the Basin and Range
– Rugged mountains stretching from Alaska almost to Mexico; high elevations
– Contains the Continental Divide, which determines the directional flow of rivers
Basin and Range
– Located west of the Rocky Mountains and east of the Sierra Nevadas and the Cascades
– Varying elevations containing isolated mountain ranges and Death Valley, the lowest point in North America Coastal Range
– Located along the Pacific Coast, stretching from California to Canada
– Rugged mountains and fertile valleys

...and here is a video to help:

and if you missed any of the physical regions classes or want another look, here is another Virginia teacher's regions lesson:

Not getting time zones?  Watch this video:

Need a map of the U.S.?  CLICK HERE for a labeled U.S. states and capitals!  CLICK HERE for a blank map!

We have completed all of the SOL political regions of the U.S., and will be testing on the 50 states and the cities we learned. Students should practice by playing some of the mapping games at on the United States page.  The video below may help as well:

Here is a video of the old Animaniacs song of the 50 states with subtitles to help you:

North America Unit

During this 9 weeks grading period, we will cover the United States and the rest of North America region by region with several mini-units and quizzes.  Students will be learning the 50 states and key cities, and will need to locate them on a map and spell them correctly..

While the regions do not match up with the SOL regions, some simple regional games and puzzles have been posted to the games page.

1st 9 Weeks Checkup!

Click here for the STUDY GUIDE! Click here to take the online PRACTICE QUIZ!

Continents & Oceans

Students are currently learning/reviewing the continents and oceans using the 7 continent/5 ocean model.

Need to practice?  Try these continent and ocean mapping games:  Remember, not everyone uses the 5 ocean model!

Basic Map Skills !

Students are learning basic parts of a map, including compass rose, symbols, legend or key, scale, grids, and direction.  Students have learned about key lines of latitude and longitude, including the equator, prime meridian, arctic circlle, antarctic circle, tropic of cancer, and tropic of capricorn.

Click here to get a copy of the unit study guide Click here to take the online practice test

Having trouble remembering the difference between latitude and longitude?  Just think of lines of latitude like steps on a ladder.  If that doesnt work, watch this video until it gets stuck in your head:

This video may also help with understanding latitude and longitude to find locations on the earth.

Then, you can try these music videos to get latitude and longitude stuck in your head!

Finally, here is another video explaining latitude and longitude, as well as hemispheres:


Having trouble understanding how to compute distances on a map using map scale?  Try this quick and simple video to show you how it is done:



Are you ready for the Geography Bee?


Click to hear interesting stories about countries we have studied!

CLICK HERE to hear about Syrian refugees in Greece

CLICK HERE to hear about Malala Yousafzai, a Pakistan schoolgirl who survived an assasination attempt, and is now trying to build schools for young Syrian refugees

CLICK HERE to read more about Malala Yousafzai's story.

More World Geography

Asia, Australia, & Antarctica

Reminder:  Your test is Thursday May 1 (Blue) or Friday, May 2 (Gold)

Click here for the Study Guide

Click here for the Practice Test

You will need to locate and identify these countries on a map:










Myanmar (Burma)









Saudi Arabia


North Korea

South Korea



New Zealand


You will need to know and locate the following on a map.  Be able to identify what country or countries each is in or borders.  Some, but not all are links below.

Red Sea

Persian Gulf

Arabian Sea

Taj Majal

Mt. Everest

Mt. Fuji

Rub Al-Khali


Gobi Desert


Angkor Wat

Ganges River

Great Wall of China

Yangtze River

Caspian Sea

Dead Sea

Buddhas of Bamiyan

Burj Khalifa

Great Coral Reef

Uluru (Ayer’s Rock)

Sydney Opera House



Previous Unit:  AFRICA

Reminder:  Your test is Thursday April 17 (Blue) or Friday, April 18 (Gold)

CLICK HERE for the Africa study guide

CLICK HERE for the Africa practice test

You will need to locate and identify these African countries on a map:















Democratic Republic of Congo

South Africa


Central African Republic

Africa Maps

Blank outline map

Labeled outline map

Physical map of Africa

Students have asked for films about Africa.  Even if we had more time, I find many movies about Africa often reinforce the stereotypes and misinformation many have about the continent, especially older films or public domain films that would be middle school apporpriate.

I am puttling links fo a few excellent middle school appropriate films that feature Africa.  They are linked here more for their entertainment and film history value than their value in teaching Africa, but even so, they are well worth watching.  They are frequently shown on TCM, but well worth owning.  Casablanca is my single favorite movie ever made. The Blu-ray double feature is am especially good deal!

Previous Unit:  Europe

Students can prepare for the post-test using the many Europe games on the games page. 

You will need to locate these European Countries and their capitals on a map.  Click on the country for more information.

United Kingdom















Czech Republic



New York Times Europe Travel Guide

Here is the Europe Study Guide!

Europe Maps:

Blank Outline Map Labeled Outline Map
European Landform Map Europe Rivers Map
Europe Peninsula Practice Quiz British Isles Map

Here is the Europe Practice Test! 

Europe Vacations      

Still struggling to remember the countries of Europe on the map.  Try this video!  It covers a few more countires than you are responsible for, but it might be helpful!

Find flights from New York to Europe on Book now!

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Doctor Who Store

CLICK HERE for the Caribbean & Latin America Study Guide!



To help students with Canada, here are a couple of extra resources:

Interactive map of Canada           Printable map of Canada          Canadian Geographic Canada Puzzle

CLICK HERE to visit Canada's government website!    


To help students with Mexico, here are a couple of extra resources:

Interactive map of Mexico          Printable map of Mexico          Mexico map jigsaw puzzle

I would like to welcome all my new students for the second semester!  The first major task for all current and new students in the second semester is to prepare for the 2nd 9 weeks checkup test.  The test is cumulative on everything we have covered so far this year.  Mrs. Richardson, Mr. Sheridan, Mr. Silverman, and Mr. Shrader have all covered the same material as I have, so all students should be prepared.  We will review during the week we return from the holidays, and test on Tuesday, Jan. 14th and Wednesday, Jan. 15th.  CLICK HERE for the study guide.

Click Here to take the Practice Test!  --- UPDATED JAN 13


As we get ready for the post-test on May 23 covering everything we have done this year, scroll down and use the many resources below to help you study!

CLICK HERE for the study guide!

CLICK HERE for the practice test.

CLICK HERE for last years practice test (extra practice!)



Useful Geography Links

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Mr. Bower's students at work!

  • Mr. Bower's students hard at work!


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