Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8

In this lesson plan, adaptable for grades 3-8, students watch the BrainPOP movie Map Projections and explore the other features in this topic to learn all about the difficulty of creating flat maps from a global shape.

### Students will:

1. Watch a BrainPOP movie about map projections and explore associated resources.
2. Turn a 3-dimensional globe into a 2-dimensional map to assess how that affects the continents' placement.

### Materials:

• Internet access
• Navel oranges
• Red and black markers

### Preparation:

• Preview the movie Map Projections to plan for adaptations.
• Determine which of the topic’s features you plan on having students explore (e.g. Challenge, Creative Coding, Newsela, Primary Source, etc.) and use the Assignment Builder to Assign them to students.
• Bring in to class navel oranges or other easily peelable oranges and provide red/black markers they can share.
• Display a globe to show your class the continents and longitude/latitude lines.

### Lesson Procedure:

1. Display a map of the world and a globe. Ask students how the map and globe are alike and different.
2. After students share their ideas, project the Map Projections movie on the whiteboard. Read aloud, or have a volunteer read the summary that appears below the movie player.
3. Watch the movie as a whole class.
4. After the movie, ask students to discuss what they learned from the movie about why flat maps were important during the 16th century, when Mercato invented his mapping system, and why they're important today.
5. Now distribute oranges and markers to each student or pair. Instruct students to draw the seven continents on their orange in red marker, trying not to smudge the lines. Then, ask them to draw the longitude and latitude lines in black.
6. Next, challenge students to peel their globe oranges carefully, making separations between continents if possible.
7. Have them place the flattened peels on their desks in an approximation of a global map, and ask them to note what happens to the longitudinal and latitudinal lines? How does the earth's shape seem to change? If they were trying to sail from Africa to Europe, how would they do it differently on the globe than if they were following their map projection?