A board covered in canvas protecting maps. Black and white maps. Maps of farmland. Maps that showed crops, waterways, and entrances and exits for fields. My first remembrances of maps were maps that my dad used in his part-time work at the Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service (ASCS) office.
These maps were a part of family life. We would wait in the car after Sunday Mass while Dad met with a farmer. Kids in a car. Sometimes reading. Sometimes writing. Sometimes playing games like “I Spy.”
When completed these black and white maps would have markings on them in colored pencil noting changes. Each map was a section of land. One square mile. 640 acres of land. Math, Social Studies, and a lot of talk. An interdependence of content decades and decades ago.
History is filled with maps that share information about exploration, settlement, and expansion of populations. How do the visuals add to our understanding?
Are maps important today? Why? What maps do students need to learn about? What maps do students need to create?
Let’s face it. Maps are readily accessible through google and our smart phones or gps devices. It is easy to get oral directions or a map from a business location online.
But what about maps like Georgia Heard’s Heart Maps? What about capturing and creating connections between ideas that I want to remember. Heart Maps add another dimension to writing and then reading. Not familiar with Heart Maps? Check out this link for additional details.
What skills do you use to understand maps?
What maps do you use on a regular basis?
Are you a map consumer or a map creator?
Thank you, Two Writing Teachers, for this weekly forum. Check out the writers and readers here.
NEA and Maps (link)
US Interactive History Map (link)
Heart Maps (link)