The top quarter we decided looked like a "rectangle with the corner pulled up". So she drew her own "rectangle with the corner pulled up" on her paper after I did mine on my map.
The next section we looked at was below our "rectangle with the corner pulled up" and we decided that this section looked like a "piece of pizza with two bites taken out of it"! So my daughter drew her "pizza with two bites out"!
The right side of the map was a little more challenging and required us to use our imagination more to see something on that side. We started with the top right and decided that it could be drawn like a "snail shell and snail body sticking out" as my daughter put it.
We added a "cup" for Alaska and some "spills" at the end for the Island's in Hawaii!
It was fun to take the map and break it down with our imaginations. It helped my daughter feel like drawing the US map wasn't so formidable and it gave her a good beginning base for the general shape of the US. It also changed her attitude about drawing it. Once up in the Challenge levels they will be able to draw all the states inside the map...but for now, this is a good starting place for us to familiarize ourselves with drawing the US map for cycle 3. I would encourage you to help break down the US map for your kids if they are younger, instead of just having them outline the map only. It will make it much more memorable for them to free hand it later on. Think "blobbing" the US, similar to what we teach when we "blob" the World map.
I definitely plan to have my daughter outline the US map as well, don't get me wrong. I think outlining the map is definitely needed and beneficial. I believe using a combination of both free handing with shapes like above and outlining will be helpful though. As she sees the four sections broken down and begins to learn the states and capitals, it will be easier for me to give her reference points based on her imagined drawings. I imagine this would be even more true for younger children that are abecedarian or apprentice age. For example, you could say "Where on the map is New York"? Your younger child may have no clue initially but you could say "It's inside the snail's body"...or "Where is Florida"? "It's Pinocchio's nose"! They would much easier find it, then to explain it's in the North on the East Coast, or the South on the East Coast- this would be especially true for younger kids who are challenged to remember left from right and east from west!
Just another way to use our imaginations to learn something new in the spirit of classically creative!
Leave a comment if your child comes up with some of their own imagined shapes to draw the US Map! I'd love to hear them!
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