This week, students became expert topographers and learned all about topographic maps. Topographic maps are a way to represent the three-dimensional features of a landscape on a two-dimensional surface (a map) by not just showing locations, but also by showing the elevation changes of the land. The varying elevations of an area are shown using contour lines, which connect areas of equal elevation.
Students had the opportunity to make a model of a landform using Play-Doh and slice it up into segments to create a topographic map of their model. Some students also had the chance to create a model of Hawai’i’s Big Island, only based on the information given in the provided topo map. Work with your student on the follow up activity and ask your student to show you how to interpret a “topo” map of their hand!