Learning Continents 3: Africa by Nyla Thursday

COURSE: Geography 370: Introduction to Cartography

MEDIUM: Map/Data Visualization

This map of the African continent and surrounding island nations is the first in a series of geography activities for children to learn their continents, countries, major cities, and surrounding marine areas. The colors and labels are meant to be playful, engaging, and clear. There is a set of activities in the upper right corner of the map for the young geographer to orient themselves in the map and guide their learning. They are learning about the continent as well as how to read a map. For that learning, the legend and compass are prominently labeled, and South is oriented up. The book of maps will shift orientation to encourage different ways of looking at the world, where North does not need to be up, and to teach directionality in a more robust format.

My love of geography and cartography is first as a lifelong learner and a teacher of all ages. Maps are a wonderful learning medium for different learning types. They are creative, alive, and interactive!

My previous cartographic and GIS background was in more analytical work, but in this assignment, I found my passion in focusing on young learners. I intentionally named the map Learning Continents 3, because activities 1 and 2 will be global views before moving into continents and regions. Each continent will have a map like that of Africa, but others will be focused on regions and will be designed to leave space for young geographers to draw, write, and become a part of the cartographic process.

I look forward to spending my life learning, teaching, and influencing enthusiastic geographic learning.