National Geographic: Maps and Geography
You can search for Maps in their MapMachine Online Atlas but National Geographic.com also provides interactive quizzes, games, expeditions and tours as well. The online National Geographic Atlas of the World profiles 192 independent nations and in each entry you’ll find key geographic, demographic, and economic data as well as a brief overview. Students will benefit from the Homework Help section where they can research pictures, articles, maps, and more for reports, presentations, and more. National Geographic also offers geography-based quizzes and trivia. The Map Maker provides physical and political characteristics of countries and includes aerial views. You can view nearly any place on Earth by population, climate, and more.
National Geographic: History
The section of the National Geographic Magazine website devoted to history is an extremely high-quality production, with frequently updated articles, videos, photographs, games, and a polished interface. The site focuses mainly on ancient civilizations, describing its material as ‘mysteries of the ancient world.’ The organization of this site is somewhat lacking, as the individual topics are not organized by time or geography. So, although a visitor can click on a link to ‘Valley of the Kings,’ there is no way to see all the material related to Egypt collected in one place. However, the articles themselves, often drawn directly from the print version of the magazine, are well-written and augmented with links to relevant information on other parts of the National Geographic website. It is very interesting to casually browse this site, but a little harder to find specific information.
David Rumsey Map Collection
The growing David Rumsey Historical Map Collection has over 20,000 maps online and focuses on rare 18th and 19th century North and South America maps and other cartographic materials. Historic maps of the World, Europe, Asia and Africa are also represented. Collection categories include antique atlas, globe, school geography, maritime chart, state, county, city, pocket, wall, children’s, and manuscript maps. The collection is now in Second Life and over 150 new maps have been added to the Rumsey Historical Maps in Google Earth.
Map History/ History of Cartography
Map History, managed by the former Map Librarian of the British Library, is hosted by the Institute of Historical Research, University of London, and forms part of the WWW-Virtual Library. Spread over about 100+ pages, it provides a well-organized global overview of the history of cartography as well as over 5000 annotated links. The site provides reference information and web articles, and it lists activities, opportunities, and resources for surfers and scholars. There are also leads to the collecting of early maps and there is a section aimed specifically at parents and teachers. The site design is a little outdated, but the content is updated regularly.
The Ancient World Mapping Center
The Ancient World Mapping Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill offers a series of online resources related to the Barrington Atlas and other aspects of ancient geography and cartography. Go the Free Maps section for small-scale ancient geography reference maps for classroom and personal use. (A blank version of each map is usually available.) You can also find updates to the Barrington Atlas; free, download-able maps for educational use; and articles about new discoveries.
A Geography teacher from Pennsylvania has put together this award-winning teaching resource. Contents are organized around four major areas: Geographic Information; Geography Games, Puzzles, Quizzes, Trivia; Pennsylvania; and Geography World. Check out the links to Maps and Globes as well as the Geography Quizzes area. The site design may look outdated, but the resources are updated regularly.
HyperHistory Online: Maps
Hyper History Online covers 3000 years of history through maps, timelines, lifelines, and graphics. The over 2000 files are grouped into People, History, Events, Maps, Science, Culture, Religion, and Politics. The Map section covers seven periods of World History: Early Civilizations; Greek Colonization; Rome + Han China; Barbarian Invasions; Expansion of Islam; Mongol Empires; A.D. 1500 – 1800. There are also regional maps from Antiquity and World War I and World War II maps.
OSSHE Historic Atlas Resource Library
This resource from the University of Oregon and Universität Münster provides an extensive and often interactive series of maps that include Europe, Middle East, North Africa, and North America. The material is copyrighted, but open to academic users. Some of the U.S. map modules require the Shockwave plugin.
Reports and interactive maps on census data from 1790 to 2000. Interactive maps allow you to choose a time period and demographic feature to look at. You can zoom in on any area or request a corresponding report on the specific information you request. Free maps are mainly of population, race, and religion, but a premium subscription allows access to many more maps. The “News and Announcements” section also offers some interesting special demographic reports. A great resource.
New Jersey Historical Maps
A great selection of New Jersey maps from the 18th century to the present. There is a wide array of maps—many show state and town boundaries or geological features, but additional features include schools, highways, railroads, and even Revolutionary War battles. “The Changing Landscape of New Jersey” also provides a series of maps from each county, with links to local historical societies as well as student research tips.
Atlas of California Online
Atlas of California Online features animated and interactive maps created by a Humboldt State University Map Design Seminar. You can zoom in on their Flash-based Physical, Cultural, and Historical map collection, but you’ll need the Flash Player. The atlas contains historical maps of native American groups, maps of explorers, and more.
Historical Atlas of the 20th Century
An interesting and informative collection of information on the twentieth century. Atlas topics include: General Trends in Living Conditions, Government, War, and Religion. Maps are often interactive, allowing you to zoom in on details. There are essays, FAQ’s and links.
Periodical Atlas of Europe
The Periodical Atlas of Europe features 21 online maps showing the countries of Europe at the end of each century from year 1 to year 2000. Also includes a few images of historical sites.
CIA World Factbook
The CIA World Factbook provides limited commentary but a wealth of statistics and information on Geography, People, Government, Economy, Communication, Transportation, Military, and Transnational Issues of 266 “world entities.” It offers maps of major world regions, Flags of the World, a Physical Map of the World, a Political Map of the World, and a Standard Time Zones of the World map. The Factbook is a great starting point for amassing general information about individual countries.
Teaching with GIS in the GeoSciences
Created by Brian Welch, Dept. of Environmental Studies, at St. Olaf College, in Northfield, MN, this section serves as an introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in Education. There are also Teaching with Google Earth and Teaching with GPS. This section is part of Starting Point – Teaching Entry Level Geoscience from the Science Education Resource Center at Carleton College.
Crisis in Darfur (Google Earth)
“Crisis in Darfur” is an impressive, interactive Google Earth file from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum as part of their “Mapping Initiatives.” Students can view images of burned-out Darfur villages and gain a deeper understanding of the destruction as a result of the civil strife in the area. The Google Earth file could serve as a useful introduction to the crisis in Darfur and lead to in-depth analysis of its effects and ramifications. Other USHMM Google Earth files include Genocide Prevention Mapping.
Teaching with Google Earth
Created by Glenn A. Richard of the Mineral Physics Institute at Stony Brook University, this section serves as an introduction to Google Earth in Education. He outlines potential uses for students and teachers, shows how to get started, provides a user guide, and offers examples. This section is part of Starting Point – Teaching Entry Level Geoscience, from the Science Education Resource Center at Carleton College.
Learn Google Earth
A collection of tutorials covering intermediate and advanced techniques for making the most out of Google Earth.
This introduction to GIS explains Geographic Information Systems, provides real-world examples and “best practices,” discusses GIS in Education and Science, and shows uses for libraries and museums. There are case studies in K-12 demonstrating uses of GIS in the classroom.
Students Map Neighborhoods with GIS
This Education World article explains how Geographic Information Systems (GIS), mapping and analysis software employed by the U.S. government, NASA, and other agencies, now is helping students locate and document hazards in their communities and includes tips on how to use GIS in the classroom.
The USGS and Science Education
The U.S. Geological Survey website provides scientific information about natural resources, natural hazards, geospatial data, and its online resources, include lessons, data, maps, and more, to support teaching, learning, education (K-12), and university-level inquiry and research. Lessons are organized by grade level and include information about using both Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in education.
Quia is a quiz and game creation service that has assorted links to geography quizzes and games. Quia also makes it easy for teachers to create their own quizzes.
A commercial site that has a good set of links, geography quizzes, and a resources page. See “Hot Links.”
The Traveler IQ Challenge
This is a fun online geography game that tests your knowledge of various places in the world. Among the topics are World, Asia, Africa, Europe, Latin America, and USA Challenge. You need to reach a predetermined score within a set time frame to advance to the next level of the game. So, move fast! Whether you want to test your own travel knowledge or those of your students, the Traveler IQ Challenge is an engaging option.
This Tetris-themed online game tasks students with placing states and provinces into their correct locations on a black map. It can be helpful for memorizing basic geography.
This New York Times interactive timeline/map shows how immigrants settled in the U.S. over time.
Mapping America: Every City, Every Block 503
Another New York Times interactive map that allows users to browse local data from the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey –based on samples from 2005 to 2009.
U.S. Presidents Birth Places
This Google Map charts U.S. Presidents via their birth places.
Users can overlay (mainly historical) photographs on top of Google Maps Street View and add their own story.
As part of a project to digitize California artifacts, five Google Maps have been created to showcase digitized historical photographs.
March of Democracy
This Worldhistory.com map flashes democracy’s “march across history” in 90 seconds.
This is a timeline and Google Map of world conflicts from 3000 BC to the 1970’s.
This site provides maps of every location in the Old Testament and New Testament.
Do you know about US@ Geography?
This website offers four activities for learning about the geography of the United States.
WorldAtlas.com: Blank Maps
WorldAtlas.com offers a large selection of blank maps of various regions of the world as well as map tests. There are outline maps with state or country boundaries for modern Africa, Asia, South America, North America, and Europe as well as the U.S. and its regions. All outline maps and map tests may be used (at no charge) for any educational application whatsoever.
Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection: U.S. County Outline Maps
The Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection at the University of Texas at Austin offers more than 11,000 map images online out of the 250,000 maps in their printed collection. Its U.S. County Outline maps were produced by the U.S. Bureau of the Census.
P&P World Map
P&P World Map is a Japanese website (translated in English) that offers online geographic maps of countries, continents, and the globe free to print. They also allow the user to write text, draw pictures, paint in certain areas, and label locations. Mind you, one could just as easily save a blank map and edit it using built-in software. The ease of creating one’s own map online, however, allows for a very flexible and creative learning, while providing a detailed variety of maps to choose from.
Houghton Mifflin Eduplace Online Maps
Eduplace has freely-usable blank outline maps of the world classified by region and map type. There are political and physical outline maps of the world and various regions.
Free Blank US State Outline Maps in Illustrator & Editable PDF
PDF versions of blank state maps can be opened using the free Adobe Reader software and are designed for use in a wide array of software applications. The maps are also scalable to virtually any size without loss in detail or quality.
About.com Blank and Outline Maps
About.com offers collections of blank and outline maps to print out for educational or personal use at home or in the classroom.
National Geographic: Maps and Geography
National Geographic offers outline maps in the Xpeditions Atlas section and allows you the option of modifying the maps to print with or without borders.