Maps Mania: New uses for maps in language classrooms

If you’ve ever taken a language class, chances are there was a map of the language’s “home country” on the wall. This map was useful when talking about a specific region, but otherwise it was just a picture on the wall 99% of the time. These days are–or should be–over.

Maps Mania is a HUGE collection of the most amazing maps the internet has to offer. These are not picture-on-a-wall maps; they are living, breathing illustrations of life in a specific area, compiled from a wide range of sources. With 8,000+ posts over the last 10 years, ranging from the silly to the serious to the silly/serious…just clear your schedule for the rest of the day.

Uses in Language instruction:

  1. Maps from around the world: with over 8,000 posts, some containing links to multiple maps, there’s a good chance you can find something for just about anywhere. You can use the search box for a specific city/country/region, or use some of the more global maps.
  2. Geographic and social context: What do these maps say about the people who live there?
  3. Something interesting to talk/write/present/collaborate/ask questions about.
  4. Higher-order thinking: rather than remembering a phrase and spitting it back out, these maps provide opportunities for evaluating, analyzing, and creating in the target language.

Respond! Post a link in the comments to a map you find particularly useful or interesting.

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