On Facebook the conversation recently turned to maps. What books and resources do you use, how do you approach learning about maps? And I thought since I was making links over there anyway, it would also make a good blog post and then I’d have a more permanent cache of the links to my favorite things that I could easily share with people. And anyway, any excuse to blog about books. And maps. I love maps.
First we have our Globe, which I bought on sale. And the stand is broken and it’s about to fall apart, but the kids still love it.
We also have a world map on the wall, Dry Erase Peel and Stick Giant Wall Decals World Map. It’s perfect. The kids love looking at it and so far it’s sticking very nicely to the wall in the hall.
And we also have a laminated US map, which used to hang up but now is just stored in a roll until we need it. If I had more wall space I’d get a stick on map of the US just like the world map, but wall space is hard to find round here.
And then there are the books.
1. We love the National Geographic Atlas of the World. It’s huge. A gigantic, oversized book. And another one all my kids will spend hours and hours looking at. They love the maps of the moon and the solar system too.
2. Maps by by Aleksandra and Daniel Mizielinski.
Ben got this one for Christmas. It’s lovely. It has a big map spread of each continent and then individual maps for a few selected countries, 52 maps in all. Each map is covered with lovely little cartoons of people and animals and plants and historic and natural landmarks in each country. My kids have spent hours poring over it.
3. Me on the Map starts with a girl mapping her room, then her block, then her town, then her state, then the state in the US and finally the US on the map of the world. And it has suggestions for kids making their own maps. We got this one from the library a few years ago and I think it’s time to check it out again. My kids would have fun getting into making maps.
4. Another book that’s not exactly a map book but that has a map and that explores time zones is
At the Same Moment, Around the World. It begins at 6 am in Dakar, Senegal then moves on to 7 am in Paris, France, 8 am in Sofia Bulgaria and on and on, visiting one person in one city in each time zone. There’s a fold-out world map at the end of the book that tracks all the people you visit.
5. Bella really loved reading Paddle-to-the-Sea , a story about a little hand carved Indian in a canoe who travels the great lakes to the Atlantic ocean.
6. Minn of the Mississippi A snapping turtle journeys down the Mississippi River. We only got halfway through before we lost steam, but we definitely know more about the Mississippi.
7. The Atlas of Middle-earth This might seem a weird book to include, but if I want to inculcate a love of maps, than Tolkien certainly fits that bill. Bella loves staring at these maps after we read our daily portion of The Lord of the Rings.
On my wish list for next year: Mapping the World with Art
What are your favorite map books, books with maps, and other geography resources?