This presentation will help our young geographers who are on the verge of understanding geographical skills and how do different maps help them to understand different features of the Earth and the area where they live.
Maps are visual representations of the Earth’s surface as seen
vertically from above. Maps show how things on the Earth’s
surface are related to one another in terms of distance, direction
With the invention of printing in the 15th century, maps became
The first world map came about in the 16th century following the
voyages of Christopher Columbus and other explorers.
People have been using maps for a long time. The
Ancient Egyptians used maps that were drawn based
on descriptions which travelers gave.
In ancient China, maps were used to plan battles.
Maps were used for the very purposes that they are
•A map provides information such as where a
place is in relation to another. For example, the
city you live in is north of a river.
•The distance from the city to the river can be
estimated from the scale given on the map.
•With such information, you will be able to find
your way around the city.
In planning the development of a city, the planners
use a base map to show where to build a factory,
road, school or houses. In emergency, a map comes
in useful in planning a rescue operation.
These maps show the individual countries,
each separated by a national boundary. The
capital cities and major cities are usually
Administrative/Road maps show the roads,
highways, railroad tracks and points of interest
of a place. These maps are used by people to
find their way around a town, city or country.
Resource/Economic maps show the different types
of natural resources or economic activities that are
found in an area. Symbols are used to show the
resource or the economic activity.
A typical physical map shows the physical
features such as mountains, plains and rivers.
Different colors are used to show land of
Thematic /Climate maps have specific themes. For
example, climatic maps give information about the
temperature, rainfall and atmospheric pressure of a
place, a country, a region or the world. Different
colors are used to show the different temperature
Topographical maps show the physical features of a
place. Unlike in the physical maps, the physical
features are shown in greater detail. Details such as
the shape and height of each feature are shown with
the help of contour lines. Human features such as
buildings, roads and farms are show
ELEMENTS OF MAPS
There are six basic elements of maps
Tell us the names
A pattern of lines on a
chart or map which
Also called vertical
relationship between a
on a map and the
distance it represents
on the Earth's surface.
A key to what the symbols or pictures in a map mean.. It represent the physical
and human features on the actual surface of the Earth.
A compass is used for showing Direction.
A magnetic needle swings around until it is pointing north. It is most useful to the
people travelling through areas without other features to guide them where to
go. The points of compass are called cardinal points
HOW TO FIND A DIRECTION?
The sun shines from south upon places in the northern hemisphere.
Everyday the sun rises in the East and sets in the West everywhere in the world.
1. Identify the points halfway between the cardinal points
2. Identify the remaining 8 cardinal points
They are used to represent the different physical and human
features found on the Earth’s surface.
By using symbols map makers are able to fit in a lot of
information on a map.
There are certain standard colours or shapes that are used in
symbols. For example, blue is used to represent water or water
features such as streams and lakes, and green is used for
1. LINE SYMBOLS
Represent line features such as roads, paths, rivers or railway tracks.
The line symbols resemble the actual features they represent.
A road is usually wider than a path.
A thicker blue line represent river
A less thick blue line represent stream
They represent features such as schools, masjid, hospitals or buildings.
3. AREA SYMBOL
They are used for features that cover an area such as lakes and farms.
Different colors are used to keep the color of the symbols as possible to the
The height of places on map is shown by contour lines, which are
imaginary lines that join places of the same height
To show the exact height of a spot, a trigonometrically station is used.
The features on the surface of the Earth are usually large and the
actual size cannot be shown on a map. The features and the area to
be mapped is therefore drawn to scale.
A scale can be shown in three ways:
The scale is started, for example, 1cm to 1km. That means 1cm on the
map is 1km on the ground
AS A RATIO:
A ratio such as 1:1000,000 means 1cm on the mp represents 100,000 cm
or 1km on the ground.
AS A LINE:
A line is divided into units, each representing a certain distance, 1 cm
represents 50,000 cm on the ground.
USES OF MAPS
TYPES OF MAPS
FEATURES ON A
-Names of features
- Key or legend
READING A MAP
• four-figured grid
•Six-figure grid reference
• Cardinal points
• straight line distance
Q1. What are maps?
Q2. What are the uses of maps?
Q3. What do you know about political and climate map?
Q4. What is an economic map?
Q5. What is a road map?
Q6. What does Physical map show?
Q7. What is a Topographical map?
Q8. What are the elements of map?
Q9. Why do we use symbol on maps?
Q11. What does a scale show on the map?
Q12. In how many ways a scale can be shown on the map?
Q13. How can we show height on a map?