Reading a Map

Elijah pulled the map out of the case and stared.

“Hm. Mmhm. Mmmmmm,” he mused, nodding her head and holding his thumb and forefinger to his chin.

“How’s it going, Elijah?” the teacher asked.

“Oh, very good.”

“Yeah? What do you see?”

“Well, there’s ‘legend’. I see ‘roads’, ‘highways’, and ‘water’. ‘Railways’ is on there, yeah. And…”

“Okay, anything else of interest?”

“Hmm…how do you mean?” Elijah asked, looking up.

“Well, reading a map isn’t just reading the words on it. It’s looking at what it shows, what kinds of information it provides, what it tells you about the area it’s portraying.”

“Okay…” Elijah looked down again, his brow furrowed.

“So remember the topographical maps? They showed hills and mountains?”


“Is that one of those?”

“Hmm,” Elijah looked at the map again. “Yes?”

The teacher sighed. “Do you see the lines showing any hills?”


“Correct. So this is probably…”

“It’s a map. With streets and stuff.”

“And another name for streets is…”




“Roads?” the teacher suggested.


“So if this map shows roads, then it’s a…”


“Correct. Well done. See what else you can find out about the area it’s showing.”


The teacher continued on to the next student, and Elijah continued to frown at his map.


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