The holiday season is an excellent way to connect children and adults with all things geography and GIS. One of the easiest tools to do that is by using maps. You can find lots of fun map related projects to do on Pinterest. My son and I enjoyed making map ornaments, gifts, and handmade Christmas cards, but our favorite project this year was map garland.
Working with so many cut outs gave us the chance to talk about all the places we had been, and places we would like to go. More importantly, discussing the symbologies and layout gave us a chance to find relationships which build upon learning how to think spatially.
In addition to hands-on projects, there are the virtual ones too. I found fun internet links to talk about the geography of our planet around Christmas. There is NOAA’s website to find out the chances of a white Christmas; however this one was far more kid-friendly.
Has your child asked, “How far is it from the North Pole to our house?” Thanks to FreeMapTools.com you can answer that question and impress your relatives with your geography prowess.
Most folks know of NORAD Santa Tracker, but did you know Google has one too? Check out Google’s Santa Tracker and NORAD for tons of fun and games each day. Have both ready to go on Christmas Eve when Santa leaves the North Pole!
They say there’s an app for everything. Download the free app from MapMuse titled Christmas Light Displays, and find all of the gorgeous light displays this year – geographically! Available on iTunes and Android.
Last but not least, have you noticed something different about Pegman? Not only he is back in Google Maps, he is sporting a very festive hat this time of year.
From all of us at AE2S, have a wonderful holiday season! See you next year!