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I Suck At Geography

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Ael Aluciz

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So today I realized I only know the geography of North America and Europe and then the rest of the world never seemed to matter. I'm fourteen, almost fifteen, and I am officially feeling like such an idiot for not having taken the time to learn it before.

(Thanks, Centurius.)

I've spent most of my life focused on English, so I've never had to glance at a map much, and my history classes up until now have been American History only, pretty much.

I'm in my first Geography class ever, and I'm doing badly.

What should I do to get better at Geography so I can keep up with my class?

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Play games with a lot of history in it.

A little before your age I still thought that Russia had there soviets borders as maps aren't exactly thing you replace a lot or try to keep yourself up to date with.

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Get an atlas, give it a look over every so often. I knew geography well because I always used to distract myself from actual schoolwork by looking at the maps hung up on the walls.

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Here is a website with a ton of online interactive geography games: Sheppard Software

I worked in international transportation logistics for many years and am something of a geography junkie. I applaud your willingness to admit what you don't yet know and take steps to address the situation.

Rather different from one dim-bulb I worked with in international logistics who asked me if Italy was a part of Europe or another who asked me for a rate quote on ocean freight from New York Port to "China" (which could mean any of 100+ different ports and customs zones)

Keep up the good work!

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In middle school my parents put a world map in my room. I also played strategy games like the Total War Series and the Paradox Interactive games that helped me a lot with geography since you need to know who you are conquering, who is allied with whom, etc. I think having a map would be good enough. A globe would be cool, too.

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studying history brings a lot of geography practice with it

Paradox games are also great for this but if you don't like strategy games you won't like them at all. HoI2 in particular helped a lot but I sometimes call things by their colonial names because the game has pre-WW2 names and not the names that countries changed to after independence (Rangoon, Bombay, etc.)

alternatively just look at maps a lot

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Sporcle is great as has been mentioned. When I would prepare for the New York geo bee (In the days before google earth :awesome: ), not only were the nations and cities important, but the bodies of water, mountains, etc. It's a daunting task, but focusing in smaller regions is wise.

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I learned geography just by looking at the globe. From there I moved up to full Atlases to get a better graps of more detailed information. Sporcle and other resources like that can be good to learn more obscure things like Tuvalu but I don't think it should be the first resource you go to if you really have no idea about the geography of entire regions.

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One of the best purchases I ever made was a large laminated world map ("old world" style with modern borders) that we hung in the living room. Not only did it look good, but it was a simple matter to just take a gander when ever a place you're unfamiliar with is mentioned in the news or other reading. And it was only like 15 bucks.

I can now, roughly, draw the outline of all the continents and have a general understanding of where all the countries are.

Also, I'll second the recommendation the others made to play Paradoxia games. Awesome stuff.

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