Lesson on How to Use Maps

Lesson Plan Title : How to Use Maps

Overview and Purpose: We introduce maps to students. This is a task based lesson. We will include the following vocabulary:







1. Teach students how to read a map.

2. Knowing the directions and how to determine location.

3. Becoming familiar with US geography and cities.

4. Locate symbols on map.

5. Be able to answer questions pertaining to map.


1. Give a sense of location in relation to local geography.

2. Have them understand distances on maps in relation to themselves.

3. Be able to recognize specific geographic features.

4. Measuring distance between cities using the measurement tool given.

5. Indicating where on the map a city is using the compass.


Map of United States



1. Draw United States. Ask students what it is you drew.

2. Ask if they have ever used a map or globe before.

3. Ask about a compass and the cardinal directions.


1. Show a compass next to the map.

2. Explain what a legend (cities, capitals, rivers)

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Learning Checkup:

1. Give them two locations and ask which direction one is in relation to the other.

2. Ask what region specific cities, states, and landmarks are located.

3. Point them north, ask where the other directions are in relation.

Wrap Up:

Ask where they would go if they could choose anywhere. Have them point it out on a map and explain how they would get there.

Commentary On How The Lesson Worked For A Veteran Teacher:

The lesson plan went very well as student was very familiar with physical location in relation to the map. I thought she had a firm grasp on both perspectives as she could show point out directions both on the map and with her hand. She knew cities and states very well and could point out the Mississippi river. Outside the United States, she was a little shaky and could not identify what bordered the US in each direction. I think a globe would be more helpful is I was to try this lesson again.