Australia Day is approaching and so I thought I’d take the opportunity to share a fun (and edible) way of learning the Australian states and territories. Great mapping lesson for kids!
I was never very good at geography at school. It’s still something that I know I should be better at, however, I’m sure if I was taught using delicious shortbread I would have been paying more attention. LOL
Now shortbread is no where near a traditional Australian biscuit, however it was important that I baked a biscuit that wouldn’t lose it’s shape after baking. I also liked the colour of shortbread, which suited my purpose, which was to decorate Australia shaped biscuits marking the states and territories.
I found this simple to make shortbread recipe by ‘Just for Daisy’. It makes a beautiful silky shortbread that you can also get your children involved in making.
Using an Australia cookie cutter ($4 from home ware store) I pinched pieces of batter to hand make our country island of Tasmania. I think they turned out very well. LOL
Once the cookies had baked and cooled I had a chat to my wonderful niece (10) and nephew (7) about the many areas that make up Australia. Firstly, to find out what they both knew, I asked them to name as many states and territories as they could. It was clear that the states they had been to on holiday were the most family, which is understandable.
Incorporating some technology in my teaching, I showed them a map of Australia and we discussed the many parts. We talked about places we had visited, places we’d love to visit and the different sizes and shapes of each state and territory. It was also a great opportunity to highlight the differences between a city and state as children commonly confuse these too. We also have fun discovering population numbers and comparing and reading numbers.
The children, choosing to use the digital map for support or not, went about decorating their Australia shaped biscuit, marking the lines to indicate the separate states and territories. Decorating pens can be purchased from many home ware store and cake shops ($3.50AU). As you can imagine, eating the decorated biscuit was a very enjoyable part to their learning experience too.
Do you think you’d know how to mark the states and territories of Australia?
More recipes and play ideas for you