My oldest loves to draw maps. Maps of the yard, our church, our yard…maps that will take him to secret rooms and treasures…We have maps all over in our house. It’s fun to compare one to another – comparing one time to another – in some cases there are such amazing differences!
We recently had the chance to try out Overlap Maps which helps in so many unthinkable ways, students to make Overlap Maps of their own and learn about the continents, and oceans. I admit this is a rather new thing to me. 🙂
OverlapMaps.com is a free educational website
provided by Sunflower Education, a small, family run business in Texas. This company believes in publishing fun stuff that
kids actually enjoy and learn from. For example, Cooking Up History are full of historical recipes; have fun baking and tasting as you explore those long ago times! (authentic historical recipes). And since kids love to PLAY, consider teaching space science with your kids creating playscapes (fullscale
spacecrafts in sidewalk chalk). And kids love BIG
THINGS, so how about teaching geography through “world records” (world’s biggest iceberg). Awesome fun!!
OverlapMaps.com is a website; with this site you can take one part of the world that overlaps a different part of the world; seeing one in comparison to another. We played around on their site quite a bit and my oldest son was fascinated to find how small some places really were. He really liked comparing Texas to Wisconsin, and Brazil, China and Jordan to Michigan. It makes you see the world in a very different way.
I have to admit I was hesitant, I did not quite see a benefit to this initially but having had the chance to watch my son work on their site, I think this really helped to bring the world alive for him. We really enjoy learning about different parts of the world; we have hosted exchange students (from Brazil, China. Jordan France) and we read a lot of history and biographies too. Life is so very different around the world. This really helps, even more, as we are reading about Ancient Egypt, or China. Germany, or Israel, to see them, in relation to our home, our country. We see, using maps, the distance of one from another. You can better imagine where and how people might live, what their routines and experiences may be. Its really a very creative opportunity!
There are Activity Sheets as well; these can be obtained for $4.99 right now at Educent. Some of these were really neat; some were a bit advanced for my son. Nonetheless we had the chance to read a bit on maps and there were questions at the end to be completed as well. We learned facts about the oceans and continents, and had the chance to compare them, via overlapping maps, in size and depth. So many facts I was not even aware of as we completed a few of the activity sheets that were included here. And my soon googled some things as well to see things in other ways too!
There were even fun maps at the end; for a little treat my son spent some time on the World’s worst weather: disasters, hottest place, greatest wind speed—then we overlapped a map of current weather conditions! It’s definitely better right now in Texas. haha
This was fun! I think this is something my oldest will grow into more too as he gets older. But for now this is a fun experience; another way to see things. We will be working with this one more in the days to come and very likely in the years to come too. I see many possible layers within this program, for home educators and any others out there who enjoy experiencing and learning more about the world our great God created! 🙂