Has your car become cluttered with old maps now that you've embraced GPS technology? Upcycle those outdated maps with this craft that unites fun and education! Your child will learn about geography, topography, and basic map skills while creating works of art from old maps.
Access to the Internet and a printer for state shape templates
What You Do:
Help your child find a website where he can access images of the outlines of states. This one is a good place to start: http://www.50states.com/maps/
Have him choose a few states for which he’d like to create their shapes from old maps. He might choose his home state, a state where grandparents or other relatives live, a nearby state, or a state which has a shape he finds interesting.
Print out the shape templates for the states he has chosen. If he wants to make just one state poster in a large size, enlarge the template.
Have him cut out the state shape, then use one or two pieces of tape to lightly tape it to part of the map. He may want to include streets or cities that are found in that particular state when he places the template on the map.
Now he can cut around the template shape on the old map. He will create the state shape on a map design!
Carefully remove the taped paper template from the map shape.
Your child can write the state name on the map design with a permanent marker color that shows up well on the map background.
He can hang the poster in his room, or if he has done several smaller size states, he might want to make a collage of them using a glue stick and construction paper background. He may be on his way to a career in cartography!
Beth Levin has an M.A. in Curriculum and Education from Columbia University Teachers College. She has written educational activities for Macmillan/McGraw-Hill and Renaissance Learning publishers. She has a substitute teaching credential for grades K-12 in Oregon, where she lives with her husband and two daughters.