Teaching Geography with Children’s Literature: Beginner’s World Atlas


Being able to read maps is a strategy that is very important. Maps are in our lives on a daily basis and knowing what the different symbols means is important when it comes to reading the maps. National Geographic has provided an excellent book to help get children develop their math skills. The content presented is age appropriate and provides definations for the different symbols that they will encompass on different maps.

Beginner’s World Atlas begins with a description of what a map is and puts the map into the contact of the student by what mapping their background would look like. In addition, it explains what a compass and scale on the map are.¬† The next 2 pages show earth in several different dimensions to help the student gain a better understanding of their home planet. Their is an example of the physical and political world with descriptions of what they show to follow. Furthermore, the book explains what the students will gain out of their reading. The rest of the map talks about the different contients giving specific information on the land regions, water, climate, plants and animals.

Curriculum Connections:
This book could be used at the end of lesson on map skills to make sure that students understand the basic map skills. In addition, the students could use the book to help them 2.6)when constructing their own map skills using a title, map, legend, and compass rose. In addition, by having this book in their classroom library the students should be able to refer to them when they need to locate the 2.4a) United States, China, and Egypt on world maps. Finally, they will be able to use the maps in the books to help them locating the 2.5a) equator, the seven continents, and five oceans on maps and globes.

Additional Resources:
In order to provide more information on maps and other related Geography topics try visiting Usefulness of Maps.

To help students with their technology skills and provide them a fun game to improve the geopgraphy skills try Geospy.

The article, Are You Map Savvy, provides basic information on other different types of map and why map skills are important. This information could be additional information to provide to your students and help answer the question Why is this important to me?

General Information:
Book: National Geographic Beginner’s World Atlas
Author: Natioanl Geographic Inc.
Illustrator: Tony Stone Images
Publisher: National Geograpic Society
Publication Date: November 2009
Pages: 64
Grade Range: 1-3
ISBN: 9780792242116

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