Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Geography and Maps
Does your child know your state capital? Can your child pick out the names of the countries that are north and south of the United States on a map? Could your child find countries overseas on a map? According to a National Geographic survey, 66 percent of American children cannot find Iraq on a world map. A whopping 75 percent cannot find Iran or Israel. The numbers are staggering.
The most frightening information surrounded our own country. Despite intense media cover during natural disasters, young Americans apparently did not take notice. Two-third can find Louisiana on a map. Fifty-two percent were able to find Mississippi. New York is the third most populous state in the Union behind California and Texas. Sadly, only half of young Americans were able to point out the state of New York.
There are reasons surrounding these numbers. Some schools have cut geography funding. Certain states only teach a small portion of geography during a history or social studies class. It is critical that schools and parents grasp the importance of geography. Write it into curricula and find innovative ways to teach children about geography using classroom rug maps. Encouraging children to learn more about maps and geography will help there educational and life experiences in the future.