Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Comparing Countries at IfItWereMyHome

Most of us are born with a great curiosity about this world we live in. We love to visit new places, get to know other people, and learn something about their countries and way of life. Kids who are lucky enough to travel overseas have wonderful opportunities for comparing their own lives with those of others.

Travel isn't the only way to compare. is a fascinating website with definite appeal to young statisticians. Teens who like reading non-fiction might enjoy exploring here, and the site is a boon to those of us who just want to see how our country compares with another.

The lottery of birth is responsible for much of who we are. If you were not born in the country you were, what would your life be like? Would you be the same person? is your gateway to understanding life outside your home. Use our country comparison tool to compare living conditions in your own country to those of another. Start by selecting a region to compare on the map to the right, and begin your exploration.

I chose to compare my country, Australia, with Canada. IfItWereMyHome told me that if I lived in Canada, I would use 53.9% more electricity, consume 51.03% more oil and have 49.12% more chance of being unemployed. At the end of each fact there's a tiny arrow and that leads to more information, including the source they base their fact on. There's also a map comparison of the two countries you choose, and a separate page that allows us to visualize disasters if they'd taken place near our homes.

I have no way of knowing how reliable the facts are, but sources quoted include CIA World Factbook and World Health Organization. IfItWereMyHome would be an interesting place to start a country standard of living comparison, then do some fact-checking of your own.

**Be sure to supervise your kids when they use the site as there are inappropriate remarks and general silliness in comments underneath the facts.
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