Aug 15, 2012

Geography - Fun Map Characters

Back in the day, I had a wonderfully eccentric Civics/Geography teacher in middle school. He asked me to name all the countries in one of the bigger continents (I can't remember which one now) while all the other students listened. I was very nervous, but I did it! To my surprise, Mr. Tucker pulled out a $10 bill and handed it to me with a big smile on his face. Ever since that day, I have loved Geography! Ha! I also want my girls to love it, so I'm trying to think of some fun ways to learn the countries on our wall map. I think I came up with something:


You don't really see anything fun when you look at our Calendar Time set-up above. But, if you get closer...


Nemo's searching for Dory out in the Atlantic Ocean...


and Strawberry Shortcake and her friends are traveling through Europe, Africa, and the Middle East (Cherry Jam has a concert tonight in Rome)!


I printed out the characters I wanted (Mary and Anna's favorites, of course), laminated them, and then attached little velcro dots (cut in half). This little project was so quick and easy!


Here's how it looks when they're not in use.


And here are the happy girls playing with their new 'map friends!' This has been a HUGE hit!

This was an idea that just came to me out of the blue today. I wasn't sure if it would work out, but I'm so glad that it did! I think these little map characters will really spice up our Geography lessons!

UPDATE: I made a smaller map for Weeks 1-2, and our Mesopotamian map friends are also now rock stars in our house. Check them out here!

UPDATE #2: I went ahead and made a whole book of maps of each week's memory work. Now we can enjoy our 'friends' throughout all of Cycle 1! Click here to read about our new map book.



(This post is being submitted to Half-a-Hundred Acre Wood's Monthly CC Blog Carnival. Be sure to check out what other CC families are up to each month by clicking on the button below!)





9 comments:

  1. love it! now to get a big map .... maybe we could do it on a smaller scale. ;-)

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    1. It's so funny that you posted that! I just made a smaller version for this week and next's geography memory work! Ha! I just posted about it, too, so maybe it will be of some help if you're looking to do something similar. My girls really have LOVED these things! :)

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  2. Such a cute idea! Thank your for sharing such a great engaging activity for younger children on the August CC Blog Carnival!

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    1. Thank YOU, Brandy, for organizing a place for all of us to share ideas! I LOVE our online CC community just as much as the one IRL! :)

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  3. This looks great but I just can't get how the velcro sticks to the map. I just had the CC maps printed out and laminated at Costco in the 20x30 size and I find my 4-year old is less frustrated with the larger size. Can you explain further how you made your little people?

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    1. Hi Elizabeth! Thanks for stopping by! I use the little velcro dots (available at Walmart) on the map. They have a sticky side, so I just press that side against the map. (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001ASD850/ref=oh_details_o00_s00_i00 copy this link into your browser to see the ones I use. This is a really good deal, too; I just ordered these right now, in fact.) Then for the little people, I did an image search for the girls' favorite 'friends.' Then I saved them to my computer and inserted them into a blank Word file. Then I shrunk them down, printed them out, and laminated them. Finally, I attached the velcro sticky to the backs of the new friends so they would stick on the map. A friend of mine had a GREAT idea to make that step a little easier. She suggested just laminating stickers, which would be very easy. Do you have a laminator at home? We have one we bought from Amazon for around $30, and we use it ALL the time. Anyway, I hope that helps, Elizabeth! :)

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  4. Where did you get your maps at?

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  5. I have the same question as Keri Hess. Love your ideas...I am new to CC this year and I will be looking to your blog for many ideas. Quick question. How do you schedule your week as far as curriculum goes? I tried to find a sample schedule of yours on your blog but didn't find one. Maybe I missed it? Thanks for all you do

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  6. I have the same question as Keri Hess. Love your ideas...I am new to CC this year and I will be looking to your blog for many ideas. Quick question. How do you schedule your week as far as curriculum goes? I tried to find a sample schedule of yours on your blog but didn't find one. Maybe I missed it? Thanks for all you do

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