Lesson plan

Map Your Day!

Mapping just took on a bold new look! With the help of Sara Fanelli’s My Map Book, students will see maps in a whole new way!
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  • Students will understand what maps are used for and create their own maps with support from the teacher.
(15 minutes)
  • Gather the students together in a comfortable spot.
  • Bring out My Map Book by Sara Fanelli.
  • Read the title of the book and point to the picture on the cover.
  • Ask the students what they think the book will be about.
  • Ask the students what a map is.
  • Allow sufficient wait time and call on a few students to answer.
  • Explain to the students that a map is a representation of a place or thing that usually looks like a picture.
  • Ask the students why maps are important. Some ideas would be: maps help us find things, maps help us get places, maps help us explore and make sense of the world around us.
  • Read the book to the students.
  • Encourage students to offer insights and connections during the read aloud.
  • Ask students to come up to the front of the class to find various items on the maps during the read aloud.
(10 minutes)
  • When you are finished reading, draw a large rectangular chart on the board and split it into three even parts. On the top of the chart write [your name]’s Day.
  • Turn to the page in the book where the author has a map of the child’s day.
  • Explain to the students that today they will be mapping their days.
  • In each space of the chart, from left to right, write "morning," "afternoon," and "night."
  • Reread the page in the book about the child’s day.
  • Model thinking about what you do in the morning and draw some pictures and words of your morning in the first column of your chart. Ideas include a toothbrush, cup of coffee, bicycle to ride to work, the names of your pets, children, or partner. Repeat this process with the afternoon column of your map.
(10 minutes)
  • Ask students to share ideas of what they do at night when they get home from school.
  • Draw pictures and words in the night column.
  • Ask a student to come up and draw their idea on the whiteboard.
(20 minutes)
  • Ask students to go to their work areas.
  • Pass out the Map Your Day worksheets, pencils, and coloring materials to your class.
  • Explain to students that they will create their own map to show what they do throughout the day.
  • Let the students get to work!


  • Students who finish early can write sentences about what they do throughout the day. Some sentence examples are, “In the morning I brush my teeth,” or “In the afternoon I play outside during recess.”
  • If time permits, the students can illustrate their sentences.


  • Students who are not able to write words may draw pictures.
(5 minutes)
  • Rotate around the classroom during independent working time.
  • Encourage students to add details to their pictures and help students with tricky words.
(10 minutes)
  • Ask students to clean up their materials and then gather together.
  • Have students bring their maps with them.
  • Standing in a circle, ask the students to share their maps with the class.
  • Point out similarities and differences in the students' maps.
  • Ask guiding questions to help students think deep such as Are there any parts in your day that you forgot about? and What is your favorite part of the day on your map?

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