As regular readers know, in addition to teaching mainstream English classes and to Beginning and Intermediate English Language Learners, I also teach a Geography class to ELLs (as well as an IB Theory of Knowledge class).
I thought it might be useful to create a “The Best” list just focused on Geography games as a supplement to these other lists:
The Best Websites For Learning & Teaching Geography
Here are my choices for The Best Online Geography Games:
GeoGuessr shows you an image from Google Street View, along with a map of the world. You click on the map indicating where you think the photo might be from, and then you’re shown the actual location. You’re given points based on how close your guess was to the original location.
The concept is similar to a number of other games, but GeoGuessr seems particularly well-designed. If played by a whole class with a computer projector, it could be particularly useful pressing students to identify clues in the image. And when you’re shown the actual location on the map, the names of many countries are shown, so it can be a good reinforcement activity.
See Richard Byrne’s update on GeoGuessr changes.
You can play and/or create geography games at Purpose Games.
Sheppard Software is a great place to send students when we’re beginning to learn about a new part of the world. They have multiple games that students seem to enjoy.
GR8CTZ — Great Cities of the World challenges you to guess which cities you’re seeing in Google Street View. It has different difficulty levels.
Class Tools lets you easily create a Map “treasure hunt” with no registration necessary.
Spacehopper is a new online game that isn’t easy but, after showing you a Google Street View image of a location, provides clues that make it less difficult. You’re shown a map with various dots on it, as well as the map outline of the country. After three guesses, you’re given the answer along with information on the location.
The View From Above is a fun geography game using satellite images
TIME has created a neat new game called “Can You Draw The States?” You’re prompted to draw a state. Once you’re done, you’re graded on how well you did and it’s put on a blank U.S. map so you can ultimately see your complete work. In some ways, it’s similar to an older game called Scribble States.
Thanks to blog reader Eric, I’ve learned about a new online geography game called Zoomtastic. In the game, you’re first shown a “close-in” shot of a section of a country, and then it gradually “zooms-out.” You’re given a few choices, and have to pick one. You can use various clues, including place names on the map.
Seterra Online has tons of Geography games. They’ve recently added a new fabulous feature to their interactives – now, anyone – without registering – can turn any of their games/quizzes into custom ones and share its unique url address. All you have to do is click on the “Create Custom Quiz” link at the top of each of their interactives. What a great assignment for students to do!
Where on Google Earth is Carmen Sandiego? is a fun new game from Google. You travel around the world to famous landmarks and interview “witnesses.” It’s pretty accessible, and I think would work for Intermediate English Language Learners in a Geography class.
Esri Maps has a series of Geography Treasure Hunt interactive games on various topics. They’re definitely not easy, but I could see some students enjoying them.
Geoscents is a new online Geography game.
City Guesser gives you the option of first choosing the world, or different areas of the word, and then shows you videos of a location. You guess where on a map, and then you’re shown how close you were to the correct answer. One intriguing option is just having it show you monuments from throughout the world.
GeoQuiz lets you name or identify countries. It’s simple, but has the neat feature of letting you compete against other players. It’s particularly nice that you can create your own virtual rooms and only play with your friends classmates.
Hide and Seek World looks like a Kahoot-like game for Geography. It’s free if you want to play with random people, but you have to pay a small subscription price if you want to create private rooms for your students. It might be worth it if you are a Geography teacher.
Globle is another Geography-like Wordle game.
Explordle, despite its name, is not a Wordle-ripoff. It’s a Geography game that shows you a short video and then provides you with a few choices. Based on what you saw, you have to pick the correct place where the video was made.
The unimaginatively named Geography Game follows the typical mode of similar games – pick a world region, the site then gives you the name of a country or state, and you have to click on it. If you get it wrong, it will tell you the correct name, and you’re timed. Though there’s not much original about it, nevertheless it’s a useful game for students.
Geotastic is similar to other games on this list that show you images of a location and have to identify the country. You can create your own game, also, but friends have to be on the same device to play against you.
Geo Artwork is a game from Google where you have figure out where a shown piece of art is located.
Touring Test is a very hard geography game, but it does have some interesting features, including having two playing options – map or multiple choice – and offering the feature of playing in a private room with friends.
Timeguessr takes geography games to a different level. You’re shown an image, and have to identify both the location where it was taken AND the year it was taken.
Let me know if you think I’ve missed any particularly good geography game sites.
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