Home School Life Journal

Home School Life Journal ........... painting by Katie Bergenholtz
"Let us strive to make each moment beautiful."
Saint Francis DeSales

Making Ancient Maps with Modern Overlays



Sometimes when studying the ancient world it is hard for students to think about what is in that same place now. We tend to study ancient maps and modern maps, but not compare the two. We recently studied ancient China and I not only had Sam make a topographical map of the land area, with ancient landmarks, but I had him make a overlay with the modern political boundaries. We found this site which had the maps we wanted, but we modified it by putting the political boundaries on tracing paper instead of a clear transparency. We just printed the topographical map on cardstock and the political boundaries map on regular paper. Then we took tracing paper and laid over the boundaries map and traced it in pencil. We then taped the tracing paper over the topographical map so that it can be lifted up or placed down as you wish. In this way, students can get a real sense of the area. This could be done for just about any map, and you could make the overlays for your student, if he is young or you and your student could make them together, if he is a bit older. Once he has done a few with you, he could make his own overlays. It would add a new dimension to his history and geography studies.

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