Have you ever thought about what a day in the US is like? Do some research to find out, then write about a typical day in this diary.
Learn About the USA
This section is aimed mainly at children from outside of the USA who are wanting to find out more about the country. We have maps, factsheets and all sorts of worksheets aimed at prompting further research.
A Little Geography...
- The USA is the 3rd largest country in the world, based on both population (321,368,864 in 2015), and land mass (9,833,517sq km).
- The United States is located in the continent of North America and borders both the North Atlantic and North Pacific Oceans, and the countries of Canada and Mexico.
- The USA has six time zones, and a varied climate ranging from tropical Hawaii and Florida to arctic Alaska.
- The country is divided into 50 states and the District of Columbia. Alaska, northwest of Canada, is the largest state by area.
- Hawaii is the state located the furthest south and is located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean.
- America's large size means that it has a varied landscape, including the Great Lakes, the Grand Canyon, and the Yosemite Valley.
- The USA is home to some of the largest rivers in the world which often flow through several states. The largest river is Missouri, at 2,341 miles long, followed by the Mississippi River which stretches for 2,202 miles from its source in Lake Itasca in Minnesota to its mouth at the Gulf of Mexico.
- New York is the largest city with a population of around 8.623 million. The capital city is Washington, D.C.
- The lowest point in the country is in Death Valley, which sits 86m below sea level, and the highest peak is Mount McKinley, which is 6,198m tall.
- Wildlife in the USA is also diverse and includes large carnivores such as black bears, grizzlies and even polar bears, which live in the northernmost state of Alaska.
A Little History...
- The history of the USA can be traced back to the settlement of Indigenous people before 15,000 BC, where many cultures were formed. Early Native Americans were nomads who moved from place to place in search of food.
- In 1606, King James I of England gave the Virginia Company of London the charter to establish a new colony in North America. By 1607, English Settlers had begun growing tobacco at Jamestown, Virginia, and a settlement grew.
- Hundreds of thousands of Africans were brought over to America during the 17th-18th centuries and sold into slavery to work on cotton and tobacco plantations.
- In 1775, a war between the thirteen colonies and Britain broke out over British policies, which led to Thomas Jefferson's American Declaration of Independence on 4th July 1976.
- The Founding Fathers drew up a new constitution for the United States of America in 1787, which came into effect in 1788. George Washington was elected the first president of the USA in 1789.
- The American Civil War was fought from 1861 to 1865 between southern and northern states of the United States. The Southern states were worried that they would lose power and the ability to make their own laws (including the right to have slaves) and wanted to leave the United States to make their own country. The US president at the time, Abraham Lincoln, was against slavery which was becoming outlawed in many Northern states. The Civil War was the deadliest war in American history resulting in the deaths of 600,000 soldiers.
- Between the wars, the USA enjoyed prosperous times known as the Roaring Twenties, but this was followed by the Great Depression when 13 million people become unemployed after the Wall Street stock market crash of 1929. The Great Depression ended as World War II began.
- During the Second World War, Japanese warplanes attacked the US fleet at Pearl Harbour in Hawaii in 1941. In 1945 the US dropped two atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in Japan, and the Japanese surrendered.
- In 1969 US astronaut Neil Armstrong became the first person to walk on the Moon.
- On November 4th, 2008, Barack Obama defeated the Republican nominee, Senator John McCain to become the first African American elected President.
The Colorado River flowing through the Grand Canyon
And Some Interesting Facts...
- Americans love pizza! 100 acres of pizza are served in the United States every day! That's around 3 billion pizzas sold every year in the USA.
- The current US flag features 50 stars and was designed by Robert G. Heft, who was a high school student at the time.
- The United States uses 18% of the world's energy.
- The seven rays on the crown of the Statue of Liberty represent the seven continents. Each ray measures up to 9 feet in length and weighs at least 150 pounds.
- Over 9 million people visit the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum every year, making it the most-visited museum in the USA.
- There are 182 places in the U.S. that have the word “Christmas” in their names!
- The first ever Ferris wheel was debuted in Chicago in 1863, standing at 264-feet tall. It was demolished in1906.
- Kingda Ka, located at Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey, is the world’s highest roller coaster. It stands a mighty 45 stories tall and can reach speeds of up to 126 mph.
- Women got the right to vote in the United States in 1920, following the 19th amendment.
The USA has a varied climate ranging from arctic in some states to tropical in others! Describe a little more about the climate of the USA, then fill in the weather phone app - you might want to choose a particular area or state first and check the current weather forecast there.
The culture of the USA is often described as a "melting pot" and has been shaped by the cultures of Native Americans, Europeans, Latin Americans, Africans and Asians.
Create an eye-catching poster encouraging people to visit the USA! Try writing a fun slogan to draw attention to your poster, and include some interesting information and pictures too.
The USA has a long list of foods that they have invented, included some tasty fast-food favourites! Find out a little more about the food that is grown and eaten in the USA, then draw a typical meal on the plate!
We've got lots of interesting facts here to help you learn a little more about the USA! Perfect for using with some of our USA activities.
Can the children imagine they are going on a trip to the USA, then 'fill' the suitcase with the items they need?
Encourage children to think about the responsibilities and skills needed to be President of the USA and write a job description for the post.
These useful maps are a great way to learn the states of the United States of America - and their relative position and size. Choose from black and white or colour, and blank or labelled versions, or download them all.
Write a newspaper story about the opening of the Statue of Liberty or use your imagination to write a story abot the Statue of Liberty being stolen on our newspaper prompt.
This writing prompt is a 3 fold leaflet. Children need to research the information to write a Statue of Liberty tourist leaflet. Encourage them to think carefully about the information they might want to include and the style that they need to write in.
Do you know all the answers to these questions about the flag of the United States of America? If not, children will have to do a little research to fill in this US flag worksheet.
The bald eagle is at the centre of the USA coat of arms, but can you find out why, and also write about the other elements of the coat of arms and find out when it was adopted?
This compare and contrast Venn diagram helps the kids learn what they have in common with children living in the USA, and to understand the differences too. The results might be surprising!
Use this Compare and Contrast worksheet to look at the similarities and differences between your daily life and that of a child growing up in the USA. Try to think about things like food, school and hobbies!
Children will need to find out some geographical facts and study the location of the US within North America for the USA fact worksheet.
This red, white and blue facts poster is perfect for USA-themed classroom displays, and it has 7 useful facts and figures for the kids to learn too...
It's amazing how many facts you can get onto one page! We've squeezed plenty of facts about the USA onto this factsheet, and it's perfect for lapbooks or classroom displays.
We have two versions of this location worksheet for the United States. The guided worksheet, is easier, providing hints for younger children.
The Statue of Liberty, the Grand Canyon or even Disneyland - we're sure you'll think of plenty to draw in this USA picture gallery! Or you could draw portraits of 5 US presidents?
Write all about an imaginary trip to the USA on this postcard, then pretend that you are sending your postcard to a friend back home. A fun activity for a bit of creative writing and for practising writing addresses too...
The fun part of this postcard template for the USA is that the picture side is blank, so you can draw your own! You could draw the Statue of Liberty, Disneyland - there's lots to choose from! Don't forget to write your postcard too...
Print this fantastic poster of the New York skyline to use as part of your USA studies and displays.
We've set the Star-Spangled Banner (the USA flag) inside the outline shape of the USA for this striking poster. Perfect for displays (and it won't use too much printer ink).
Do you know how many states make up the USA? This is one of the fun questions on our USA quiz sheet.
Write some interesting facts about the USA on this story paper, or use it as inspiration for a story set in New York, or anywhere else in the USA!
There's plenty to inspire the kids in this 25-page study pack full of activities about the USA. You can pick and choose the activities you want to try, or have a go at them all!
This handy printable can be folded into a small leaflet that's perfect for USA tourists to take away with them! It's quite tricky to sum up a whole country in one small leaflet, so try to share the more important information and the best bits about the USA...
If you've seen travel brochures you'll know that they are colourful with lots of information and pictures to make people want to go there. Can you write some content for a travel brochure for the USA? Remember to draw a picture too...
We've hidden 15 words all to do with the USA in this word search grid. Can the kids find them all? We've included the solution below, too...