We are fascinated by maps. Subway maps, state maps, museum maps, world maps, the GPS map in our car... Through maps, we've noticed symbols, compasses, distance markers, and landmarks. I've taken my children's interest in maps as an opportunity to develop their visual literacy skills.
At a recent Artful Adventures class at the MFA, we studied maps as a group. The instructor gave each child a map of the museum, and small star-shaped stickers to mark which rooms we visited. This simple idea is one we will replicate - it kept the children engaged and gave them more purpose of finding their place on the map.
We even found a large map to sit on!
When we got home, we pulled out a few of our favorite books.
We found an idea in another book I love, Playful Learning, based on "My Map Book." This colorful and creative book has many unique maps -- my kids love the "map of my tummy." We replicated our own versions of the "map of my heart."
A few weeks later, we looked at the map of the Museum of Science (that my children had previously never noticed), to find the room on maps! There, we learned how cartographers turn spheres (the globe) into accurate 2-D maps.
At Plimoth Plantation, my son was most focused on following the path on the map to get from one area to another. And, while skiing, we can't get enough of tracing our routes on trail maps.
Finding and reading maps has now become routine for us! We've been inspired to create our own maps of the neighborhood, the library, and even the grocery store. We can't wait to hear about your mapping adventures!