Suggested, Sequential Learning of Map Skills
1. In the early classes, there should be a geography programme that includes map-reading activities. Such activities are needed to give the child background and experience before the conventional map is introduced. By the end of their primary education, the children should know and be able to use the cardinal directions.
2. In the later classes, the use of shadows to indicate direction may be introduced. The best time to observe shadows is as near noon-time as possible.
3. By the end of the high school, most of the students should know the cardinal and the intermediate directions and be able to usethem. They should know that they can use shadows to determine directions. They should know that a map represents the features of the landscape in a certain area by means of symbols.
4. In the higher secondary, the maps used should be simple, with relatively few symbols. The colours should be clear, blue forwater bodies, and grey, yellow or green for land.
5. In these classes, they should be able to understand the scale (different types of scales: representative fraction, graphical scale and scale of map in statement) on every map they use and to compare maps of different scales. They should use the scale of kilometres to find approximate distances between places, for example, from their home to a large city or the length of a state's boundary.
6. During the higher secondary years the students should show considerable facility in map-reading. They should now have a large map vocabulary and have had enough practice in reading descriptive facts, visualizing the landscape, and making inferencesthat they should be able to use maps with less dependence on the teacher. No doubt, some re-teaching will be necessary and practice in certain skills should be continued.
Map-reading skills and abilities are developed gradually. Constant practice, frequent re-teaching, and review are necessary for the development of reading. The development of map skills should begin in the primary classes, and be carried on consistently throughout the intermediate classes and the junior and senior high schools. Only through such cumulative, long-term learning will maps become useful tools ' for grasping not only spatial relationships of places on the face of the earth but also for understanding the significance of geography in the development of the various cultures of the world.
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