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Improving Map Skills

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The UK’s Ordnance Survey has had a program in place for a few years in which they provide 11 year olds with a free map. For the past five years, the OS has handed out, on request by teachers, a 1:25,000 Explorer Map to students for their own keeping. The program has had a desired effect on map reading skills and geography knowledge, according to a number of studies. “Altogether, 17 separate studies have been carried out into the progress of the initiative, showing that it has significantly fostered the teaching and learning of geography and extended pupils' understanding and enthusiasm for using maps. The research found that since the launch of the initiative:
  • the number of pupils confident in their understanding of maps has doubled;
  • the number of pupils who enjoy using maps has trebled;
  • the proportion of children who perceive maps as important has doubled; and
  • 98% of teachers say the scheme had been ‘beneficial’ to geography teaching and learning in their school. ”
The studies also showed that children who walked or biked to school had better map reading skills than those who were driven. As well as being a great educational program, this initiative is also a smart - albeit longterm - marketing approach.

Read the story in politics.co.uk (IE only; this page doesn’t like Firefox).

1 Responses to “Improving Map Skills”

  1. Anonymous Anonymous 

    The press release is also available on the Ordnance Survey's web site (for those of us who can't or won't use IE).

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