Education needs to be broad- based to be most effective. Parents may have their favorite subjects and unknowingly push their children in a certain educational direction, but it is important to expose kids to many different subjects. One subject that is often overlooked is geography but a popular children’s magazine has an excellent learning tool to teach kids about the geography of the United States. It is called Which Way USA, a puzzle and educational guide that teaches kids all about the 50 states.
What is This Educational Service All About?
Which Way USA is an educational service brought to you by Highlights For Children
, one of the top names in children’s education periodicals. Which Way USA is a separate service from the magazine and it concentrates its efforts on teaching geography and other facts about the land in which we live. The educational set includes a separate booklet for each of the 50 states, loaded with puzzles that help kids learn about state capitals, cities, parks, native animals, famous people, and other things that make each state unique.
Rather than expecting children to memorize lists of facts, Which Way USA teaches kids through the use of interactive puzzles. It could be a word search, maze, picture search, word scramble, etc. The idea is to make learning fun- so much so that kids will absorb information and not even realize they are learning.
What is Included Each Month?
Each month, Which Way USA ships its subscribers two booklets featuring two states in the USA. There is no order to the states in shipments- they are bundled at random so you don’t really know what to expect when the package arrives in the mail each month. The books are all 32 pages in length and include a separate, fold- out map of the state, complete with important facts about each state on one side of the map and pictures of points of interest on the opposite side.
Illustrations in the booklets consist of cartoon- like images and are intended to appeal to a child’s more immature, playful side. But the illustrations on the back of the fold- out maps are different. They include actual pictures of natural wonders, statues, historic sites, and more.
How Much Does it Cost?
Prices are subject to change at any time, but the last shipment we received here at the Money Saving Parent headquarters was priced at $14.35 for the pair of booklets and maps. Multiply this by the 25 total shipments we will receive before the educational lesson is complete and you have a total cost of $358.75.
Which Way USA is an excellent educational service from Highlights and one of the few print- based educational lessons I have seen that actually succeed at getting kids to learn about geography. Most children do not consider geography a very exciting subject and they resist learning anything about it. About the only way to successfully teach something like geography is to present it in a way that is so much fun that kids will not even realize they are learning something, and that is exactly what Highlights Magazine has accomplished with Which Way USA. Kids love puzzles so they take to the lessons with little or no prodding. Not only do they learn about geography, but they also learn how to use information to solve puzzles, thereby developing other useful skills in the process.
Which Way USA presents a mixture of easy and more challenging puzzles and I was surprised at some of them because they were much more difficult than I expected. A good example is the picture search puzzles. They include a cartoon- like scene with lots of lines and figures and they ask the child to scan the picture and find specific shapes. Some are easy to spot, but others are very challenging and we have had to check the answers at the back of the issue more than once.
Which Way USA ships two U.S. states each month. Doing some simple math, it will take just over two years to complete the full series. The nice thing is that parents are under no obligation to continue until the end. Whether you have received only one pair of booklets or twenty, you can cancel the membership at any time. Most children will love the series and not want it to end, but like anything, there will be those children who will not enjoy the puzzles and will not want to continue. If your child turns out to be one of them, there is no need to worry because you can cancel at any time.
Highlights For Children
is one of the best publications of its kind and considering its prominence among children’s magazines and its reputation for quality, it isn’t surprising that Which Way USA is every bit as excellent as expected. Try it with your kids and while you’re at it, toss in a subscription to Highlights Magazine. Quality learning, improved problem- solving skills, and a newfound interest in geography are just around the corner with Which Way USA, yet another winning service from Highlights for Children.
Copyright 2013, Bryan Carey