This week I decided to take a brief break from All American History and plan a mini unit on mountain ranges. I wanted to use WonderMaps and demonstrate how to create a cropped map. (Free Give-Away of WonderMaps at Bottom of Post.)
First I gathered a pile of library books on mountain ranges to get my kids reading and thinking about the new topic. Then when I start to introduce mountain ranges they have some facts or ideas to add to the discussion.
Second I brainstorm hands-on ideas and create notebook pages on the topic. Since this mini unit needs maps I grabbed my copy of WonderMaps.
How to Create and Print a Cropped WonderMaps
Now WonderMaps does not have a map that shows mountain ranges, so it requires a little geography knowledge to get started. For this example I choose to focus on the Alps mountain range. (Thank-you Google for telling me which continent and countries the Alps reside in)
I clicked on the World map button on the home page, then clicked on Europe, then the blue word Western Europe. Then clicked the oval circle at the top that says Europe (western). Now I have a map that shows the countries that the Alp mountain range passes through. But I still have a lot of extra information on the map.
Next I click the eyes on the left and turn off things like the graticules, cities, cities names, river, and river names.
For the answer key map I leave the terrain, country names on the map. For the student map I will reprint and turn off the terrain and country names.
Now by clicking the “+” at the top, I can zoom in on the Alps mountain range. I zoomed to about 125% and repositioned the map to have the Alps more in the center of the page.
Then to print this map I typed command P to bring up my printing options. Notice the visual is of the map not zoomed in; I want to have the printer print my current view.
I click more options and then I can click current view. Now if the map looks really small and is not filling up the whole page click on “fit” instead of “actual size”. Don’t forget to look at portrait or landscape and decide which option looks best. For this map I went with landscape. Then hit the print key.
Now I have a map showing the Alps mountain range and the countries that it passes through.
Lesson Plan on Mountain Ranges
• Books, Videos, or Websites on Mountains
• Legos, Clay or Paper Mache
• PDF on Mountains
• Read books and watch videos on mountains.
• Use Legos, clay, or paper-mache to build the 5 types of mountains.
• Using the WonderMap answer key and student map locate the mountain range.
• Label the mountain range on the map.
• Using the mountain range notebook page, fill in the facts and characteristics of the range.
• Label the countries that the range passes through on the map.
Then repeat day 3 for the different mountain ranges that you choose to study. Younger students may enjoy learning about the Alps and Himalayans. While older students may enjoy learning about the Khyber pass in Pakistan.