I also developed an abiding interest in geography and maps. Cut to the present, an app like Google Earth and Google Maps have almost revolutionized how we look at the world. The games we played on an atlas can now be played just as easily (and more interactively) in a browser.
As we found out with real maps as kids, todays’s online games based on maps are not only fun but they are very cool educational tools. Kids of today have it so much better with all the edutainment stuff they can call up with a mouse click.
Help your kids learn more about the world with these ten online geography games. You too can jump in.
Geosense is an online geography game that you can play alone or go multiplayer. The fact that you can play and chat with someone across the world makes this game truly “˜geographical’. The idea is to get a fix on locations on the map within a time limit. You get to score over a few rounds. The game has five modes that are based on different choices of map, from an advanced world map to one that’s scrambled.
This map based game is as you might have guessed, based on Google Maps. So you will have a bit of zooming in and out to do as you try to match the image on top to a location on the Google Map below it. Some hints are provided without which I can assure you that it would be practically impossible to solve. You can also create your own map puzzles and send it to your friends.
The site’s More page says that the success rate is 11%. The game is also available on Facebook and as an iPhone app.
Speaking of Facebook, Playfish is doing its bit for the geography IQ of kids and adults alike. Being on the social networking site, it’s also where you get to show off your scores as you pit your knowledge of countries, cities, flags, and landmarks against your friends. You have games like Suitcase Shuffle, Map Mayhem, City Blitz, and Landmark Loco to waste time on.
This neat game is courtesy of TravelPod, the travel blog. You can play it on the other social networks too. Guess the locations within the time limit and move up the rounds. There’s a whole list of challenges for you to conquer. I really like the Photos of the World round.
I missed including this game when I wrote about 5 Cool Edutainment Games You Can Play and Also Donate to Charitable Causes, because the bighearted idea is the same. So is the gameplay. The rewards are that correct answers from you go towards donating cups of drinking water and lessening world thirst. The site is looking for sponsors right now.
A bit of promo and a whole lot more fun from Lufthansa, the German airline. You get to “˜pilot’ a jumbo jet and land it at destinations as directed. Three destinations and five destinations per round gives you a lot of chances to tote up points and feel good about travelling around the world.
NatGeo says that half of young Americans can’t locate world powers like Japan and India. National Geographic has a host of games including a lot of map based games in its section for kids. But I like this game because of its intent to give kids the power of global knowledge. So promote geography by taking part in the many geography games and quizzes that it has lined up. Crank up your global I.Q.
The homepage gives you two geography games to pick from. Cluesify is a clue based travel game that takes you around the world. Placefy Classic asks you to identify cities by giving you landmarks as a hint. The former is the more difficult and more fun in my opinion.
I don’t know whether this site gets updated anymore, but the collection of cool Flash based games are variety enough to play a few rounds. The list of games tests your general knowledge as well as that of geography with games like Earthquakes and Volcanoes, Ecosystems, Tourism etc. Plus, you can explore countries like Brazil, Britain, and France.
I will end the list with one of the simplest geographical games you can use to start of your child with lessons on the map. 20 questions on cities and countries which you have to locate on a black and white map with your map, that’s all there is to it. Oh, it’s not easy as it sounds if you don’t know your geography.
An already globalized world necessitates that every child knows about his neighbors and those across the oceans (and adults too). After all you wouldn’t want them to grow up, become a U.S Vice-Presidential hopeful and not know the difference between a country and a continent.
Do you or your kids play geography games online? Let us know the ones you like.