US States Unit Study: Heartland and Mountain States

Lesson 8: Heartland States
Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Kansas, and Oklahoma.

With fields covered in grain, this is Little House Country. Small towns and farmland cover the center of the United States. For us, these are the states we drive through to reach skiing in the west, but I wanted my daughter to gain an appreciation for the heartland states; The Bread Basket of America.

We read the following books to learn about the Great Plains.

Climbing Kansas Mountains - In Kansas the grain elevators are the mountains.
Eve and Smithy: An Iowa Tale - Gardens, gifts and neighborly love are celebrated in this picture book.
The Huckabuck Family: and How They Raised Popcorn in Nebraska and Quit and Came Back - Can you grow popcorn? This is a funny tale of the Huckabuck family experience.

Lesson 9:  Mountain States
Colorado, Utah, Montana, Idaho, Nevada, and Wyoming.

Wild horses, and ranching have long histories in these states which are also popular destinations for outdoor enthusiasts. Some of the nations best known national parks lie in these states including Yellowstone, Moab, and Glacier.

Learning about the mountain states we found three delightful books on cowboys. Jack Creek Cowboy gave a thorough picture of the life of a cowboy. It was quite a long picture book and good for children who are beginning to read chapter books to read on their own.

Once We Had a Horse was a simple story about two kids and their horse.

Tyler's New Boots tells the story of a boy going on a cattle drive. He doesn't want to get his new boots dirty.

A study of the mountain states wouldn't be complete without touching on Yellowstone National Park. The amazing land actually sits on top of a caldera volcano which is scary to think about. Here's an activity for kids to learn more about caldera volcanoes.- Yellowstone Caldera Volcano Activity

Once A Wolf: How Wildlife Biologists Fought to Bring Back the Gray Wolf is a great book for the animal loving child. Another book good for children beginning to read chapter books on their own, this book tells an amazing story of the history of wolves in Yellowstone. The video above goes well with the book.

Check out these great blog hops for more educational activity ideas.

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