Our U.S. studies also had us researching the differences between deciduous and coniferous forests. Below they are doing the research together and filling out their sheets.
To supplement the forest lesson we watched Planet Earth's Seasonal Forests. The kids loved seeing the animals and insects that lived in their respective areas but I think their favorite part was seeing the change in the deciduous forest from space. Amazing!
Last but not least, the kids were challenged to color all the states a different color using only 4 colors and with no bordering states the same color. Let's just say I'm glad I had an extra blank map. There's a trick to it, but I let them try to figure it out on their own first. My son thought he had a good run, coloring the middle section in an alternating pattern, but when he got to the end colors started to border. My daughter got some of the western states done before saying, "Uh-oh." Below they are coloring their second chance sheet.
Next up, Mexico!