“The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” ~St. Augustine
The idea of this activity is to spark curiosity and interest about the world where both you and your mentee learn geography (by discussing the seven continents and the different countries that make up each continent) and about different cultures.
If you have an actual globe (that you may be able to borrow in the school library), the way to play is to invite your mentee to spin the globe with eyes closed and when you say stop, the mentee is to put his/her finger on the globe to make it stop. Wherever the finger lands, that is where discussion can begin. Mentor and mentee can take turns spinning the globe. Discussion can involve a set of questions that you can use over and over again no matter what country the finger lands on.
Tips on what to discuss (more from the mentor side depending on age of mentee):
- Ask: Have you ever heard of this place?
- Be sure to point out the country name, its capital city, and its continent.
- If you have been to that place, then talk about what it was like and if you haven’t, discuss what you do know about it.
- Discussion can lead into: the language spoken there, the foods they eat, the landscape, the history, the people, customs and/or traditions.
- Options might be to: check out a book on this country, go online and try to take a virtual tour of the country or one particular city in the country, play a guessing game where you ask questions like: Do the people in this country speak English, Spanish, French or Danish?
- You can discuss how ethnicity ties into the world and how people from different countries look different because of their environments and heritage.
- Discussion about what you would do if you went to visit the country? Would you spend more time in the cities or in countryside?
The discussion around this activity can go on and on for many visits. Kids absolutely love globes and they love talking about geography because they are seldom exposed to this information in the classrooms. This is an activity to help bring back Geography and teach you and your mentee new things about the beautiful, diverse, and unique world we live in.
If you cannot access a globe from the librarian, you can always use the print out of the World Map. Instead of spinning, you would both take turns closing your eyes, moving your finger around the world until one of you says STOP, and beginning from there.