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Geography Fun #3 – Country Guru

A guru is someone who knows A LOT about a certain subject. In this activity, a child can become a guru on a country of his/her choice.

First, do you already have a country that you are very interested in? Is there an area of the world that you would just love to visit? A country that you have already visited and would love to go back to? Or, you could just cover your eyes and point to a place on a map or a spinning globe for your choice.

After you have made you choice of which country you will become a guru on:

1. Look at the physical land features of the country.
Are there any major rivers?
Are there any mountain chains?
Is it a coastal country, or is it land-locked?
Are there any famous geographical features?
What’s the highest elevation in the country?
What’s the lowest elevation in the country?
Is the average elevation of the country higher or lower than where you live now?

2. Next, look at a political map of the country.
What is the country’s capital?
What are the major cities and where are they located?
Are there major population centers?
Are there any ports?

3. What is the weather of your chosen country like?
Is it hot?
Is it cold?
Does it have seasons that vary a lot or are all the seasons similar in temperature?
Does the country get a lot of rain, or very little?
Does it snow there?
Does it have a storm season (rainy, hurricane, etc.)?

4. Then, investigate the animal and plant life of your chosen country.
Are there any animals that can only be found here and no where else in the world?
What kind of animals can be found in the country?
Does it have any endangered species?
What animal and plant is the country most known for? (e.g., the USA national symbol is a Bald Eagle)?

5. What is the language or languages mainly spoken in the country?

6. What is the main culture in the country?

7. What is the main religion found in the country?

8. What are the main crops grown in the country?

9. What are the main exports of the country?

10. What are the main imports of the country?

11. What is the political structure of the country?

12. Would you consider the country an industrialized country or not? Wealthy or “third world”? Why?

13. What is the average salary in the country (wages earned)?

14. What kind of foods are eaten in the country?

15. Is there a national costume that the country is known for? Or that is special to the main ethnic group in the country (i.e., the Sari in India, wooden shoes in Holland, etc.)?

16. Is there are particular style of architecture most often seen in the country or was seen during earlier historical periods (e.g., the Japanese pagoda)?

17. Is there a special game that the country is known for (i.e, soccer, jai-a-lai, etc.)?

18. What is the main way people get from one place to the next (i.e, train, foot, bicycle, plane, water plane, canoe, outrigger, etc.)?

19. Does/did the physical features of the country affect any or all the aspects of the country you have just covered (transportation, housing, food, etc.)?

Now that you’ve become a guru, share what you’ve learned by making up a quiz or game to share with family or friends.

Some other fun things to do would be to:
Recreate a folk art from the country
Sample or prepare a typical dish indigenous to the country
Make a relief map of the country using paper mache pulp or a salt dough recipe.
Recreate a costume from the country

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