WorldTeaser Geography Challenge

Subject: Geography; World Culture
Grade(s): 4-6

Overview
Using the process of elimination and critical thinking skills, students determine the correct answer to questions about geography and world culture and then demonstrate their understanding of the process of elimination strategy by creating their own WorldTeaser Challenge questions.

Objectives
Students will:
· Understand the meaning of process of elimination
· Learn how the process of elimination can help in answering multiple choice test questions.
· Locate countries on a world map and identify their world region or continent.
· Develop questions that demonstrate an understanding of the process of elimination

National Geography Standards
Standard 4: The physical and human characteristics of places.

IRA/NCTE Standards for the English Language Arts
Standard 6: Students apply knowledge of language structure, language conventions (e.g., spelling and punctuation), media techniques, figurative language, and genre to create, critique, and discuss print and nonprint texts.

Materials Needed
· World map
· WorldTeaser: World Culture and Geography game

Getting Started
Write the following WorldTeaser Challenge on the chalkboard:
The name of this country in Asia means “land of the pure.” Is it:
(a) Peru
(b) Pakistan
(c) Pachyderm
Ask for students to vote by a show of hands whether they think the answer is (a), (b), or (c). Tell students that the answer is (b) Pakistan. Then ask students: “If you didn’t know that the answer was (b) Pakistan, is there a way you might have been able to guess at the correct answer?” Lead students in a discussion of Process of Elimination. Ask: “What is a pachyderm?” (An elephant.) Since pachyderm is not the name of a country, we can eliminate it as a possible answer. Then ask: Is there any other clue to the correct answer in the question? Say: “The question tells us that the country with the name “land of the pure” is on the continent of Asia. On what continent is Peru? (South America.) Therefore, we can eliminate Peru as a possible answer.

Development
Next, write the following WorldTeaser Challenge on the chalkboard:
The very first international Starbucks opened in this Asian country in 1996. Is it:
(a) Jordan
(b) Japan
(c) Java
Then ask: Which one of the possible choices can we easily eliminate? Why? (Answer: (c) Java, because it is not the name of a country.) What clue to the correct answer can we find in the Challenge statement? (The answer is the name of a country in Asia.) Then, have students locate Jordan on a world map. Ask: In what world region is the country of Jordan? (Middle East) What does the challenge question tell us. (The correct answer is a country on the continent of Asia.)

Activity
Divide students into small groups. Let each group select a different country of the world to research. Tell students they are going to write a WorldTeaser Challenge question like the two they just read. Tell students to follow these steps.
(1) Find an interesting, unusual, or trivial fact about their country. For example, if their country is Libya, students might write: The flag of this country is one solid color with no writing or decoration on it.
(2) Next, have students revise their statement to include the name of the country’s continent or world region. For example: The flag of this country in Africa is one solid color with no writing or decoration on it.
(3) Now, write three possible answers to the question. Tell students to pick one silly or obviously incorrect answer, such as Limeaid. (Tell students their choice does not have to begin with the same letter of the alphabet as their correct answer.). Then pick one possible answer that is the name of a country which is not in the same continent or world region as their country. (For example, Latvia or Luxembourg.) Finally, tell students to write the correct answer. When completed, their question should follow this format:
The flag of this country in Africa is one solid color with no writing or decoration on it. Is it:
(a) Limeaid
(b) Latvia
(c) Libya
Have each group pose their WorldTeaser Challenge to the rest of the class.

Follow-up
For a more advanced WorldTeaser Challenge game, suggest that students develop clues about their selected country based on the certain physical and human characteristics, such as:
Physical characteristics:
1. The name of a country that the selected country borders.
2. A tangible or intangible characteristic that help distinguish their selected country from other places.
3. The climate, vegetation, or typical animal life found in their country.
Human characteristics:
1. The primary language of their country.
2. The political system of their country.
3. The primary religion of their country.

Next Week: Language Arts Lesson Plan on Idioms

Source: WorldTeasers: World Culture and Geography — An educational game designed to help upper elementary grade students supersize their global knowledge with fascinating, intriguing, and amusing trivia about countries and their culture. Grades 4 +. Available at SchooDoodle.com.

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