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States and Capitals Games

Instructor: David Wood

David has taught Honors Physics, AP Physics, IB Physics and general science courses. He has a Masters in Education, and a Bachelors in Physics.

The names of the states and their capitals can be quite a chore to learn. Make it more fun with these creative classroom games and activities to try in your classroom.

States & Capitals Games

Learning the names of states and their capitals is quite a challenge - after all, there are a lot of them! Thankfully there are ways we can make it easier, and maybe even fun. Check out some of these ideas for games you can use in your classroom.

Reflex Quiz

Turn learning the states and capitals into a competition with this reflex quiz. Start by positioning a large states map at the front of the classroom. If necessary you can draw this yourself on the whiteboard, but using a map is much easier. Split students into teams, and position them at equal distances from the map. Then, call out names of states chosen randomly (you could choose yourself, or draw it from a deck of index cards). Anyone who knows where the state is, and/or the name of the capital must rush to the map and place their hand on the state. The first person to touch the state gets a point for their team. They also get the opportunity to name the state capital for an extra two points. The team with the most points wins.

If your class is large, and this is too chaotic, team members can take turns as the spokesperson for their teams. That way you'll only have one person from each team rushing to the map at once.

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