In this age where GPS systems guide us through our turns in life, it is still valuable for us to see where we are in the world and to look ahead to see where we are going.
Maps are cool. They help us understand our place in this world. They help give us perspective on the relative size of our neighborhood, our country, our planet, our galaxy in relation to what is around us. Maps help us develop our spatial reasoning skills.
National Geographic concluded in a 2013 report on maps and education, “Spatial thinking is arguably one the most important ways of thinking for a child to develop as he or she grows. … A student who has acquired robust spatial thinking skills is at an advantage in our increasingly global and technical society.”
As New School Montessori preprimary children work on their mapping skills, they find “buried treasure” every time, as they gain insight into their place in the world and as they improve their skills in navigation and mental mapping.