Passport to the World: Africa and Antarctica

From: $70.00 / month for 5 months

Grades: 5th-7th

Live Class: Thurs 2:00–3:00 p.m. ET

Dates: August 26–December 17

Price: $299

Instructor: Susan Spivey

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Course Description

See Reviews of Instructor Lisa Reissig


This is the first semester of a planned six semester course of study for 5th–7th graders.

Grab your passport and a suitcase, and let’s travel! This semester course will incorporate both geography and culture. We will recognize important characteristics of each continent, read and create maps, identify countries, and learn key geographical terms. However, we aren’t just going to learn about the geography, we will try to experience the culture of many countries as well. Oh…did I forget to mention? You will be writing about your experience in a travel log, so bring a camera and notebook. Your readers are waiting.

Course Structure

The main objectives of this course are:

  • Develop independent map-reading skills and atlas usage
  • To become familiar with physical features of the world
  • To increase understanding of geographical terms
  • To gain exposure to other cultures (music, food, language, art, holidays)
  • To practice research skills
  • To instill a love of learning through a variety of activities including some hands-on activities
  • To practice writing

Who should enroll?

Any middle schooler in grades 5-7 who wants to learn more about other countries and who likes a hands-on approach to learning is welcome to enroll.

Technology Requirements

  • High speed, broadband Internet
  • Microphone and Webcam (for live sessions)
  • Streaming video capabilities
  • A camera


I believe communication is important for success in an online learning environment. Both students and parents are encouraged to notify me as soon as possible if there are any questions or concerns. Keeping an open line of communication is essential; I want to see everyone be successful. Students can email me with questions about any assignment, and if necessary, we can set up a time for additional help. Parents, please feel free to email me so I can best serve you and your student.

Required Texts


Please note: All of these resources can be used for multiple semesters.

This course requires research so students will need the following:

  • Uncle Josh’s Outline Map Book or CD, by G. Wiggers, available at and other book retailers
  • An up to date student atlas, I recommend either of these if you need one: Rand McNally Student Atlas, ISBN 0528018957, or National Geographic Student World Atlas, ISBN 978-1426334795
  • Geography Through Art, Jeffus and Aramini, ISBN 9781931397582
  • Internet access to research family-friendly encyclopedia sites
  • International recipes – you may use the library, internet, or this book, Eat your Way Around the World, by J. Aramini, ISBN 9781931397360


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Instructor Bio

Susan Spivey

Susan Spivey is enthusiastic about sharing her love of literature with students and finds tremendous joy in teaching. Susan earned her MA in English from Arizona State University and her BS in Journalism from the University of Maryland. She worked as a newspaper reporter and editor for several years before starting her family. Susan also worked as a freelance writer for magazines and as a substitute teacher in public schools. She has taught English for many years and has been teaching for AIM Academy since 2015. When she is not reading a book, discussing a book, or teaching about books, you can find her in her garden, likely with a book nearby.

British Literature
American Literature
Christian Literature


All classes taught by Susan Spivey