Developing mapping skills
From reading maps, to orientating yourself in a city, to understanding the depth and dimensions of objects, not a day goes by without relying on mapping skills. There are so many easy ways to teach your students about the key areas of mapping, which include location, direction, aerial view, symbols, plotting, scale and relief.
Here are a few simple ideas that you can use in the classroom to focus on mapping skills:
- Choose a mapping book to read with your class; e.g. The once upon a time map book by B G Hennessy, There’s a map on my lap! All about maps by Tish Rabe or Maps by Aleksandra and Daniel Mizielinski.
- Take your class on walks around the school or the local community, then have them draw a mud map of the route they took. With each walk, the maps should become more detailed as students observe more.
- Once students learn how to draw a map, task them with creating their own island or city. Encourage older students to make their maps as detailed as possible. Split students into pairs and have them devise questions to ask each other about their maps; i.e. ‘How do I get from the school to the shopping centre?’ or ‘In which direction is the waterfall located?’
For more great activities to develop mapping skills, have a look at this article, taken from Class ideas K–3 #78.