This is an activity based on the picture book My Map Book
Students will be able to communicate a proportional relationship and the connections between elements using the conventions of simple mapping.
Maps are a representation of the size and relationship in space between objects.
- My Map Book by Sara Fanelli
- Large sheets of paper or maths topic books
Maps of Imaginary Places
This activity is based on the picture book My Map Book
Author: Sara Fanelli
Illustrator: Sara Fanelli
Publisher: Walker (2006)
The book is a series of 2 page-spread “maps” of a child’s physical spaces such as My Bedroom and My Neighbourhood, but also of virtual spaces or units of time spaces such as My Heart and My Day. It also shows maps of relationships such as My Family. The info graphics drawn in a childlike manner demonstrate the use of mapping conventions such as compass directions, geographical features, and scale.
- Before reading the book, ask students to work in small groups and quickly create a treasure map. Bring the class together and ask the groups to share their “Quick Maps”. Encourage students to explain how a map is different from being in a real place or looking at a photo, even though this is an imaginary place.
What types of things do we see on maps that we don’t see in photos or films?
Why do maps have these? (Show examples of maps with gridlines, compass directions, symbols etc.)
- Explain how My Map Book is a child’s collection of different maps of things important to her. Encourage them to look for things that are different between the maps and real places.
- Share some or all of the maps with your students. Depending on what your focus is, you may want to move through the book from beginning to end or you may select maps that are appropriate to your area of work, such as just the geographical maps (my room or the beach) or just the statistical ones (how my day or my heart or my tummy is divided up). This activity follows on from a teacher sharing the book and then returning to look more closely at My Heart and Treasure Map.
- Revisit the My Heart Map.
What are the things she loves the most?
How can you tell these things are more important than the others?
What things would take up about half of her heart’s space?
What things take up about a quarter of the space?
- Ask students to make a list of the things they think about the most. Then add a couple of things that they think about just a little bit. Ask them to draw a shape that represents their mind (remember the map doesn’t have to be photo, like the heart was a heart shape not a real heart).
- Then use the list to create spaces and drawing to show how the different kinds of things you think about are represented in your mind. Add labels around the Mind Map using sentence starters with fractions such as:
Almost half my thoughts are about…
About a quarter of my thoughts are about
A very small fraction of my thinking is about...
A fraction for this would be…
- Another day revisit the Treasure Map and discuss the difference between this map and the map of a heart or mind. This map is of place but it is not a photo.
How does she show directions?
What do the different colours mean?
What directions would you give someone to get from the village to treasure?
- Ask students to go back to their original treasure maps and add some map features they have seen and talked about. Write down the directions for someone to find their treasure.