Listening to Learn and Sorting Mats: US Territories



Do you know much about the US territories?  It seems like a topic Americans should know about, but the truth is many of us have a limited knowledge of our US territories.  But now, we have a fun way for your whole family to learn about them together!

These Listening to Learn activities and Sorting Mats are also part of our Ultimate US Territories Bundle, which includes unit studies, too!

These resources will help you learn about these US Territories:

  • American Samoa
  • Guam
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Puerto Rico
  • US Virgin Islands


Start with the Listening to Learn US Territories

This resource has 10 sets of following directions to teach you and your children all about the US territories above.  There are two sets of directions per territory.

The first set of following directions for each state is called Territory Map and has you work with a map of the territory to learn about interesting places and some of the history of the territory.  Learn about geographical features such as mountains and coral reefs and historical facts about indigenous people and countries that colonized their land. Find out other fun facts about the territory and practice following directions with cardinal directions.

The second set of following directions is called Territory Facts.  It reviews some information from the first set of directions and teaches you about the territory flag, how it got its name, the languages spoken there, a popular food and plants and animals that grow and live there.

While you all learn together, your children will also work on language concepts such as left/right, north/south/east/west, and above/below.  They will have the opportunity to follow directions with these concepts multiple times to improve mastery.  One-step and two-step directions are included.

They will also be asked to write short notes at times.  This prepares them for high school and beyond where they will need to listen to information and write the important pieces down.

Instructions are provided to simplify the activity for children working at lower levels and to increase the difficulty for students who need a challenge.

To try a FREE sample of this activity, click here to automatically download our US Territories Overview set of directions where you will learn a little bit about all 16 US Territories!

Follow-up with the US Territories Sorting Mats

This fun sorting activity will help your children organize the information they learn about each territory.

Often children need help ‘filing’ what they learn in the correct ‘drawers in their brains’ and building connections between the concepts they learn. This reusable resource provides hands-on, active practice at organizing a variety of concepts that belong to each territory.

Students will match the following cards to each territory:

  • Map of the territory.
  • Flag
  • Nickname.
  • Photo of the Territorial Flower.
  • The indigenous people who first inhabited the land.
  • Year it became part of the US.
  • Who it was acquired from.
  • How long those people had been there.
  • An interesting fact.
  • Photos of two animals that live there.

It is a great way to see what children have learned.  The US Terrtitory Sorting Mats can also be turned into a game by setting a timer to see how fast children can match the cards to the correct territory.

Differentiate the activity by putting out the mats for just two or three territories at a time. And/or limit the types of cards you put out to just a few categories, such as map, flag and interesting fact.

An answer key is included that students can use to self-check their work.

34 pages

3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th grades


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