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Build Map Reading Skills in 6-7 Year Olds

Does your child dream of finding buried treasure or exploring the globe? Try these activities to build his map reading skills.
 

Learning Benefits

Use these activities to strenthen map reading, schema building, and literacy in your 6- to 7-year old:

  • Letterboxing is an interesting mix of treasure hunting, art, and navigation, with a bit of literacy thrown in as well -- like geocaching for the artist. To see if you might like the idea in general, check out http://www.letterboxing.org/kids/q1.htm. 
  • Pirate Adventure: Learn about real pirates across history in this fun interactive. You will likely need to read this to your child, but it asks the equivalent of comprehension questions as the adventure progresses. What a fun way to get your child involved in higher level thinking and literacy skills! You can also learn about the discovery of the Whyduh after nearly 300 years: http://www.piratesexhibit.com/ and http://www.nationalgeographic.com/whydah/main.html. Take virtual tour of one of the tall ships.
  • Pirate Summaries: Enhance your child’s summarizing abilities with this fun interactive at Into the Book website. Get a key and then drag the flashlight into the book icon to get to the summarizing pirate adventure.
  • Treasure Hunt: Make an edible treasure (e.g., cut a Ho-Ho® in half and put a candy ring, chocolate coins, and candy necklace inside). Download these card templates and make a treasure hunt for your child to discover their hidden loot.
    • Want on online version? You child will need to solve the clues with inferences, schema, and predictions to find the pirate’s treasure: http://www.rochedalss.eq.edu.au/mapp.htm
    • For an adventure that offers reading comprehension and basic mouse and keyboard skill practice, visit Pirate Annie.
  • The Mystery at Oak Island: Ready for a real life mystery adventure? Unless your child is an advanced problem solver, you may need to support your child to have this adventure. Along the way, your child will decode symbols, which is a nice entry into talking about decoding skills. When children decode a word, they ascribe sounds to letters. Here they can ascribe letters to a different kind of symbol. 
  • Pirate Reading: Choose your sound group and let the pirates throw coins to you, with words on them. Your child decides if they are real words or not. Your child can get additional reading practice with this pirate reading game where he must put the real words in the chest and the not real words in the trash. A pirate dance is his reward. There are lots of levels and lots of sound clusters to choose from. 
  • Pirate Writing: Pirates are famous for their letters-in-a-bottle. Encourage your child’s writing skills by having her put pen to paper to create some fun pirate notes. Get a plastic bottle and cork at a hobby store and add some sand and glitter for authenticity. Bring it to the post office for hand-stamping and mailing! 
  • Explore Patch the Pirate Radio Broadcast
  • Treasure Map Book & Activity: Listen to the story and print out the accompanying map. Can your child follow the parrot’s directions as the book progresses and find the treasure? When she is done, click around for more pirate activities.

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