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Roadschooling Across the USA- Resources for Learning

Roadschooling is learning or homeschooling on the road or while traveling.  Here is a list of ways you can focus on US geography through books & more.

Roadschooling is the word "we" use for describing homeschooling that you do while you travel.  Road trips are a perfect opportunity to sneak in a bit of learning- map reading, budgeting, workbooks, sign reading, car millage, and so much more.  This blog post is focused on geography resources for helping kids learn about all the states.


Road Trip USA Curriculum from Confessions of a Homeschooler

When I first started thinking about ways we could learn US history and geography on our cross-country road trip, Road Trip USA came to mind.  I've been considering this curriculum for several years.  It covers history and geography in one unit.  Click on the colored text above to read more about it.

50 States Coloring Page from 1, 2, 3 Homeschool 4 Me

I haven't decided if I want to use a full coloring book of the states or just pages for each state we'll be traveling through (roughly 12 if my map skills are correct).  The above website will allow you to print one state at a time, which is great for shorter trips, where you only want to focus on one area.

Montessori 3-Part Cards for US Landmarks

We love the Safari Ltd toobs for sensory bins and educational play time.  The USA super toob is filled with 12 figurines that show the landmarks or symbols of America.  This printable gives you matching cards with real photos for learning the names of the landmarks.  Read more about it by clicking the link above.

Montessori 3-Part Cards for US Landmarks to match the Safari Ltd USA toob.  Great for map work, travel, sensory bins, and more.

Great Books

The 50 States: Explore the USA- We bought this book a few years ago, and it's one of the kids' favorites.  They love to get it down and look through the atlas at all the states they've visited and where they'd like to go.  Each map has landmarks on them that kids will remember, and my kids like to point out all the places they remember.  I fully intend to bring the book with us on our big cross country road trip.

America's National Parks- It's hard to take a coast to coast road trip without getting near at least a few National Parks.  We love visiting Yellowstone and the Badlands when we travel through those states, and we're trying to decide which we should visit on our upcoming adventure.   This book tells kids all about the 60 US parks and gives them lots of information about what they can discover there.

Rand McNally 2023 Road Atlas- In the age of Google Maps on our phones, it might be tempting to think that a paper atlas isn't necessary.  While many people can get away with not ever owning one, there are many places in the US where cell service is spotty and a paper map might be very helpful.  It can also be very useful for planning bigger road trips as it can help you visualize the entire journey and plan some alternative routes and side quests.  Kids love to look at the map while you drive, also, and it can be very helpful for anxious kids.

The United States of America Coloring Book- If you don't want to print out coloring pages or activities for your kids, you could buy this coloring book.  The pages are very detailed and include a state map, flag, bird, animals, flowers, and more.  I'm planning on buying one for each of my kids.

Melissa and Doug State License Plate Game- I've been eying this wood, self-contained game for several years.  Kids (or adults) can look for every state license plate and use the board to keep track of the ones they've found.  I love that you can play the game again and again.  You could even keep it in the car and mark off license plates all year long.

License Plate Travel Sticker Book- If you don't want to buy the wood game, you can buy this party pack of stickers.  The book is almost like a passport, so you can keep track of the states you visit or the license plates you see.  With 12 books per order, you can get enough for a large family or for multiple trips.

Only in America: The Weird and Wonderful- Sure you can look on the Roadtrippers app for strange attractions along the roadside, but this book is much more accessible for kid while promoting literacy and geography.  Families can read all sorts of interesting facts about each state and learn some of the unique traits of each region.  For example, where is there a giant pistachio or a mailbox you can climb inside?

Magic on the Map Series- This fiction collection is similar to the Magic Treehouse books, except they travel all over the USA.  I wish there was a book for every state, but the four that exist are fun for early elementary kids or as a family read aloud.

American Grub: Eats for Kids from All 50 States- The local cuisine of every region in the USA is so unique and reflects the culture of history of each state.  This cookbook has family-friendly recipes and instructions for making specialty dishes.

US Geography books and resources for learning while you travel.

Surprise Toys

Safari Ltd USA Super Toob- My kids have enjoyed the Safari toobs of animals and figurines since their toddler days.  The USA one has 12 objects that represent different symbols or landmarks around the USA.  You can use them for map work, with 3-part cards (linked above), in sensory bins, or for messy play.  They can also serve as a kid "bucket list" of places they'd like to visit. 

Interactive Talking Map- I picked this item because it's compact and doesn't have many pieces for taking on your road trip.  The map is loaded with over 700 facts about the USA.  I think it would be a great learning tool for a road trip.

American Flag Pop It Toy- Fidget toys are great for road trips and travel and the pop it ones are super popular.  This flag toy would be a fun surprise toy for a red, white, and blue themed road trip party on wheels (here are more ideas).

Red, White, and Blue Sunglasses- Sensory sensitive kids can benefit from a pair of sunglasses to help reduce the glare in their eyes while traveling.  Sunglasses are a great idea for all kids, while they're outside during the summer.  These red, white, and blue ones are fun for an All-American summer.

Party Favor Bubble- When my kids were little, party bubbles were my magic trick that I pulled out of my purse when they were grumpy.  It instantly distracted them and helped us get through the end of the shopping trip or whatever.  These tiny red, white, and blue bottles of bubbles would be a fun surprise toy to give kids on your trip.  I like using tiny bottles because there's less to spill if the kids drop them.

Star Ballpoint Pen- You can never have enough pens on a road trip.  Kids can use them for writing notes to each other (sneaky writing and spelling practice), playing games like hangman (more spelling) and tic-tac-toe, completing dot to dots or mazes, and checking off state license plates on a list.

Back Road Tape- My boys love cars!  This paper tape with a road printed on it (look for railroads and other paths as well) allows them to make a race track in the car.  Because the quality is a lot like painters tape, it will even come off of a hotel room floor easily, making it a great "quiet" activity for stopovers.

Roadschooling is learning or homeschooling on the road or while traveling.  Here is a list of ways you can focus on US geography through books & more.

There's lots more great content for your road trip across the USA on the blog!

Large Family Road Trip Hacks From Moms who Know

Crafting in the Car: Traveling While Creative

20 Silly Sing Along Songs for Road Trips

Crazy in the Car: Traveling with Sensory Needs


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