National Geographic Traveling Map of South America

December 12, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

On Thursday night, the map arrived. 110 pounds rolled up in a tube with a trunk full of activities. We had received the map of South America. The map took up the majority of the floor in Gym. The Galapagos Islands was a separate map off to the West. There was also a small map of the World so that students could understand the scale and where South America was in relationship to the world. It took 15 minutes just to unroll it and unpack the trunk.

Preparation: I created a schedule with all classes coming into the gym for 25 minutes each. Some classes overlapped by 5 minutes. It was a tight schedule and the next time I would try to keep the map for two days so that the time could be spread out more. I prepared the students by doing some pre-lessons on geography using Atlases, Google Maps and the National Geographic Interactive Map. We also did a short lesson on researching about  South America. I thought the students were ready, but there was so much to know. They needed to know South America.

Lessons: National Geographic has a multitude of lessons at: http://events.nationalgeographic.com/events/special-events/giant-traveling-maps/.  There were lessons from K-12 grade levels in many different topics from Map Symbols to Animals and their Habitats. I had chosen 4 different lessons for my 6 grade levels. When I went through the lessons to see how much preparation I needed between classes and quickly realized that I needed less lessons. I went from 4 lessons to 2 lessons. The setup and breakdown times on many of the lessons was overwhelming. Parent volunteers along with Matt Kiser, the tech teacher, and Steve Brennan, the PE teacher helped immensely with crowd control and organization. Students were engage and excited while learning about South America.

For more information on traveling maps please visit the National Geographic site at: http://events.nationalgeographic.com/events/special-events/giant-traveling-maps/

 

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