North America Topic Guide

The continent of North America stretches from the Arctic Circle in the north, to the tropics in the south. There are 23 countries on the continent, as well as 22 dependent territories (that are governed by other countries). To the west is the Pacific Ocean, and to the east is the Atlantic.

Scientists believe that the continent has been inhabited by humans for at least 20,000 years.

Teach your children about North America using our handy topic guide!

Choose a section:
Teaching Ideas | Resources | Facts | Videos | Books | Links

Teaching Ideas

  • On an outline map of North America, mark the countries that are found there. Use an atlas, Google Maps, or this interactive map to help you.
  • Challenge your children to correctly identify the countries in North America on this interactive map.
  • Plot a route between cities in two different North American countries. What would you see on the way? How could you travel between them?
  • Write a story set in a North American country.


North America Facts

  • North America is the third largest continent in the world, by area. It includes Central America.
  • The largest country, by area, in North America is Canada: the smallest is St Kitts and Nevis, a Caribbean island nation.
  • The southernmost country in North America is Panama.
  • Greenland is part of North America, and is the largest island on Earth that is not a continent.
  • The largest city on the continent of North America is Mexico City, with about 21 million people living in the city and surrounding areas.


North America

This video gives a good overview of the geography of the continent.

Running time: 3:29

North American Animals

A short video for younger children showing some of the animals native to North America.

Running time: 2:32

How North America got its shape

Older children will enjoy this fascinating video that shows how the continent of North America was formed.

Running time: 4:57

Countries of North America, their Capital Cities and their Flags

Learn the capital cities and flags of the countries of North America.

Running time: 7:53

Seven Continents Song

This song will help children identify the seven continents.

Running time: 2:02


Alma and How She Got Her Name

Alma thinks she has too many names, until her daddy tells her how she came by them.

The Year I Flew Away

Find out what happens when Gabrielle moves from Haiti to Brooklyn.

Blue Birds

A historical novel for older children about the settlement at Roanoke.

North and South America Study Book

This book is full of facts and information about the Americas, along with activities to complete.

Bird Guide of North America

Learn about the birds of North America in this bright and engaging book.

What's Where on Earth Atlas

A beautiful world atlas that gives a different viewpoint from a traditional atlas.

Are you teaching your children about other topics? Explore our full collection of guides!

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