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A New Look at the World

Recently I came across a blog post online featuring 40 Maps That Will Help You Make Sense of the World from A Sheep No More. The topics range from where Google Street Level view is available to countries not invaded by Britain and time zones in Antarctica to the highest paid public employee in each state. Obviously, you can find information on just about anything in map form on this post.

So, how can you use this in the classroom?

  1. "World Map of Earthquakes Since 1898": You could have your students research the areas with the most reported earthquakes. The science-related perspective is obvious. But what about the economic? If you look at the areas most prone to earthquakes, can you draw any sort of conclusions about what earthquakes are doing to the economies in that area?
  2. "Worldwide Map of Oil Import And Export Flows": Looking at where the US (or another area in the world) gets their oil from, how are the political relations between those areas? Look at a region and pay attention to who they export the most to. Why might that be?
  3. "The 7000 Rivers that Feed into the Mississippi River": Randomly chose a city in one of the states with a river that feeds the Mississippi. From a math point of view, how fast would you get to the Gulf of Mexico from that city given traveling by a certain water transportation method? The students would need to first trace where they'd  have to go, figure out the estimated length, etc. From a social studies perspective, what cities or towns would they pass along the way that would be worth stopping at and why? Create a sales pitch to convince people to stop there versus other towns. The science aspect of this one is pretty easy to think about.
  4. "Worldwide Annual Coffee Consumption Per Capita": For a health classroom, what are the health effects of coffee and caffeine in general? Knowing that, what can you hypothesize about the health of the top consumers (and those on the bottom of the list)? After researching those countries, are you right? Wrong? How so?
  5. "Earth’s Population by Latitude and Longitude": From a cultural and science prospective, what kind of conclusions can you conclude about what draws people to the most (or least) popular latitudes and longitudes?
With 35 other maps, this post could become super long very quickly. Obviously these maps can be the foundation for a vast range of thought engaging and real life research projects. See a map that catches your eye, but want help figuring out what you could do with it? Let me know! I have a ton of ideas to toss out to you if you want them.


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