Making Maps

Making Maps

Location: indoor and outdoor

Materials: paper or white board, pencils or markers, pictures of buildings in your neighborhood (optional)

Maps are a great early math activity. They help children develop spatial reasoning, which is how we understand 3D objects in the space around us.

Ways to incorporate map-making into your program:

  • Start small. Worth together to make a map of your classroom or house. Kids can practice looking around the room to determine where things go. Ask questions like:
    • "what shape is this room?"
    • "if the door is here, what is right here?"
    • "what goes next to the sink?"
    • "where's the bathroom?"
  • Map out your neighborhood. Create a map of the things around your program. Ask kids to remember what they see on the walk to the playground. This can be an ongoing project that you add to over time. You can even use a camera to take pictures of important places. Print these out and add to your map.
  • Create a map for kids to follow. Kids love scavenger hunts and treasure maps. Use the map of your classroom to create a treasure map. Challenge your kids to follow the map to find the hidden object.
  • Include maps in play. Add clipboards, paper, and pencils to the dramatic play area so kids can create maps of their own.

What We're Learning:

  • shape recognition
  • spatial reasoning skills
  • fine and gross motor development
  • language and vocabulary development
  • building memory