Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
I am going to admit somthing to you: I hate geography. I am directionally challenged and have zero desire to ever teach geography to my kids. I have attempted a geography cirriculum a few years back and we only lasted a couple weeks and gave up. It’s been on the very back of my list of priorities and I had no intention of adding it into our education anytime soon.
Then I gained a new perspective of how geography could be taught. Byron’s Games has brilliantly come out with a board game called Continent Race that makes studying geography not only easy but fun! I had no idea how edifying playing this game would be in our home and how quickly Continent Race would become our “go-to” board game for family time and time with friends!
The game includes:
– A game board of the world map
– A deck of Color-coded country cards
– 5 Continent boards
– Simple Instructions
The main object of the game is to collect 4 countries from the same continent (or 2 from Australia/Oceanic Continent) completing sets for any 3 continent groups and racing your opponents to complete your matching sets before they do. Using a simple draw from the deck method, the player chooses whether or not they wish to keep the card they’ve picked up. They can choose to discard a card that doesn’t match a set they are going for, however, they must call out which continent that country is on in order to discard it. When a player completes a set of cards they may lay it down in front of them while pointing out each country they’ve included in their set on the map for all the players to see.
There is an advanced play option where a player is required to get country cards for all 5 continents.
The deck of country cards also includes orange mystery cards which can be shuffled into the deck. These cards do not tell you which continent the country is located on. In order to use them in the proper continent group, you must first locate them on the map, then use them appropriately to complete a continent set.
The large cardboard Continent Cards that are included make it easier to study where your country is located as they are larger than the picture on the actual game board and include a list of countries on the back of them.
We first played Continent Race when I gave birth to my 7th baby girl. We all climbed into my king size bed and played for over an hour. It was so much fun! We had to look up the pronunciation of many of the countries as most we had never heard of. It then became a game we pulled out on our family nights, when we had babysitters over, and even when my sister came over for a “quick visit” to drop some baby clothes off.
Something amazing happened! As my kids read through their school books and paged through the chapter books they were working on, they gained context as to where their stories took place in relation to the rest of the world. They read about oranges being deported from one country to another, and they knew which continent it was located on and could readily locate the countries on a map! They understood where Greenland, Iceland, and America were in relation to each other as we studied Lief Erikson and his adventures.
How simple teaching geography could be! My whole perspective has changed and my eyes are opened! I wonder what other subjects could be learned through games? I am determined to find out! I am eternally grateful to Byron’s Games for creating Continent Race and saving my children from being clueless on the whereabouts of Madagascar and Russia.