Get access to our homeschool planner and more! Sign Up

Promote Map Use by Kids the Subversive Way

Promoting Map Use Subversively

Photo credit: Laura Grace Weldon

Looking for a curriculum your kids will like?
An online homeschool curriculum can open new doors by creating an interactive learning experience that brings concepts to life.
online curriculum
Homeschooling should be fun.
With Time4Learning, it can be!

Hoping to spare my kids my own geography impairment, I hung a large world map in the kitchen a few years ago.

But how to make that map a go-to place?

I know the ho-hum status educational products achieve around here. I don’t really believe anyone sits on the toilet studying the expensive shower curtain I bought featuring SAT vocabulary words on it. I know our stack of handy reference place mats haven’t been out of the drawer in years.

Yet that map is in use every day.

Let me share the secret with you.

Graffiti.

I hang a dry erase marker from the map and encourage everyone to write on the map’s laminated surface. Or at least don’t actively prevent them.

Friends visiting from Japan, Mexico and Mali circle their homes. My kids’ pals draw arrows to places they’d like to travel. I put pithy quotes in the margins and write loving affirmations over troubled areas. The people who really use the map? My kids. They turn continents into hungry cartoon animals, regularly changing the captions and configurations. They underline obscure place names or convert more ordinary names to amuse themselves. The world on our wall is an interactive place. My son draws a sea monster in the evening, by the next morning it’s sporting a dorsal fin and thought bubble courtesy of my daughter.

When the map has to be wiped clean so it can be scribbled anew the tide of protest indicates some learning is going on. “Hey, don’t take off the macro lens I put over Micronesia,” and “I drew that crocodile by the Cayman Islands for a reason.”

Yes, we actually go to the map for its intended use. We still read the daily newspaper here (retro geekism) and find the map quite handy. Its proximity to the stove makes borders and oceans and mountain ranges matters for contemplation while cooking, engendering some bigger thoughts than the immediacy of food.

I don’t think my geography impairment has improved much. But the map continues to bring the world to my kids even if it also brings sea monsters to my kitchen. Good trade off.

Laura Grace Weldon

Laura Grace Weldon is the author of Free Range Learning: How Homeschooling Changes Everything, a resource guide for raising life-long learners and also a collection of poetry titled
Tending. She writes about learning, sustainability, and hopeful living for GeekMom.com, Mothering.com, and her blog. She lives with her family on Bit of Earth Farm where they raise cows, chickens, honeybees, and the occasional wild scheme. She's slow at work on her next book, Subversive Cooking.

Read Next Post
»
Read Previous Post
«

Promoting Map Use Subversively />

TheHomeSchoolMom may be compensated for any of the links in this post through sponsorships, paid ads, free or discounted products, or affiliate links. Local resource listings are for information purposes only and do not imply endorsement. Always use due diligence when choosing resources, and please verify location and time with the organizer if applicable. Suggestions and advice on TheHomeSchoolMom.com are for general information purposes only and should never be considered as specific to any individual situation, nor are they a diagnosis or treatment advice for any kind of medical, developmental, or psychological condition. Blog posts represent the views of the contributor and do not necessarily reflect the views of other contributors or the publisher. Full terms of use and disclosure

Comments

  1. What a fun idea!! I LOVE maps and have several hanging around the house. But what a neat idea – the kids will keep looking just to see if there is something new!

  2. This is perfect! I love it thanks for sharing!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.