Near East PDF


Near East is a hands-on geography unit about latitude and longitude and the countries of the Near East with focus on Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Israel, Turkey, and Iran. It is for mentors to use with ages 6 to 18, family style.


Near East is the second unit in the Mapping Our World geography course. In this unit you will learn about Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Israel, Turkey, Iran, and also latitude and longitude.

Each Mapping Our World unit includes a skills lesson about maps and map making followed by a focus on a specific region of the world. By the time you complete the entire four year cycle of Layers of Learning Geography you will have covered the entire world and learned the skills and knowledge needed to analyze and understand maps, cultures, people, governments, and the planet all over the world.

This unit is a guide for the mentor to use in creating lessons and directing discussions and learning. It is not a textbook for the student.

This unit includes sections on:

  • Global Grids
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Iraq
  • Israel
  • Turkey
  • Iran

This is an activity based curriculum. You pick activities to do as you read books and watch videos about countries and the countries of the Near East. Here are some of the activities found in this unit:

  • Draw your own grid system on a balloon globe
  • Practice grid navigation on the floor
  • Make a colorful grid on our earth map
  • Color and label a map of the entire near east
  • Make flatbread
  • Read a folk tale about Khizr the Wizard from Iraq
  • Craft an interactive map of Iraq from a printable
  • Make a relief map of Israel
  • Make a mini book about Nasreddin, a teller of tales
  • And much more!

See Inside

This is double page spread of the inside of the Near East unit:

Inside view of a page from Near East

The sidebars contain extra information to add to your learning including facts to read, additional information to pursue, extra books to read, things to discuss as a group, and writing ideas. The center, large section of the book, is filled with ideas for hands on learning to fill out the things you learn from your reading and to make homeschool fun. The hands-on can be done as a group, the whole family learning together.

The beginning of the Near East unit includes a Library List of book titles we recommend to go with this unit. It also contains a set of search terms to use at your library to take advantage of the resources that are available. The Library List is pick and choose as well, just select the titles that are available and interest you.

Each Layers of Learning Geography unit includes library lists of books, a family read-aloud suggestion, hands-on activities, printables and paper crafts, sidebars for extra learning, and tools to help you assess student’s progress and mastery. Learn more about how Layers of Learning works.


This unit was written to be used for a month but contains plenty of content for many more weeks of learning if you choose. This is a pick-and-choose curriculum, meant to be cycled back to in the future when your child is older. As such, it intentionally includes far more material than you can possibly cover in a month.

Near East is also part of the overall Mapping Our World, the second Year of the four-year Layers of Learning Geography cycle. If you use the program in order, it will take you though the geography of the world from continents and the physical planet in Year One, to mapping skills in Year Two, then to cultures in Year Three, and finally, to government and society in Year Four.  Every year is also a tour of the whole planet, making stops on every continent. However, each unit stands alone and can be used independently of any other unit.

Printable Pack

This unit comes with a downloadable Printable Pack that includes all the student worksheets. The printables can be copied as many times as needed for your family or class.

You can download the Printable Pack from your receipt or from your account at Layers of Learning.

Near East Printable Pack

Extra Resources

This unit comes with extra weblinks and a YouTube video playlist on the Mapping Our World Resources page.


PDF Download





Cycle Year

Year Two

Product Type

Single Units




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