Do you know...?
1. How many states are in the USA?
2. What two states are "unconnected" to the rest?
3. What is the biggest state? smallest?
4. What are some US territories?
5. What is the capital of the USA?
6. How many letters does a state abbreviation have?

Hello everyone! I'm happy to welcome you to Introduction to American Studies! In this class, we will learn about the geography, history, culture and society of the United States of America and Canada.

First of all, what does "America" mean? In a narrow sense, it means the United States of America. But in a wider sense, it can also mean the continents of North America (including Canada and Mexico) and South America. The area between North America and South America is called Central America. Together, these continents are also called "the Americas".

Although most people in the US and Canada speak English, most people "south of the border" of the US speak Spanish. People who have a Spanish heritage are called Latin-Americans or Latinos, and the group of countries where Spanish is mainly spoken is called Latin America. Other languages commonly spoken in the Americas are French in Canada and some parts of South America, and Portuguese in Brazil.

In the US, there are 50 states, which are like prefectures in Japan. In Canada, there are 10 provinces. How many of them can you name?

The biggest state in the US is Alaska, but Alaska is not "connected" to the rest of the states. The biggest state in the continental (or connected) US is Texas. The smallest state is Rhode Island. Alaska is about 425 times bigger than Rhode Island! In Canada, the biggest province is Quebec, but Alaska is bigger than Quebec.

Both the US and Canada both have territories, too: Canada has 3 (Yukon, Northern Territories, and Nunavut) and the US has 5 major ones (Guam, Puerto Rico, Samoa, Virgin Islands, and the Northern Marianas) and many smaller islands. Territories are managed by their countries, but do not have the same rights as states.

Every state and province has a capital city, but the capital does not need to be the largest city. For example, the largest city in California is Los Angeles, but the capital is Sacramento. Every state also has a state flag, bird, flower, tree and a state nickname.

Pick a state or province? and research it!

Useful links:


state flowers

state birds

state trees

state capital cities and nicknames

state flags

Sample presentation: