Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Mapping: Make a Topographic Map

Give each group of students a can of Play-Doh.  Have them shape the Play-Doh into a mountain - they can be creative, but simpler is better.

Use a skewer or a straw to poke a hole all the way through the mountain - that's the reference point.

Use a rule to make marks on the side of the mountain every centimeter.

Use dental floss to cut off the bottom slice of the mountain, cutting at the mark you made.

Place the slide on a piece of paper.  Trace around the slice and make a mark where the hole is.

Cut the next slice off the bottom of the mountain.

Place the slide on the paper, lining up the hole in the Play-Doh with the mark on the paper.  Trace around the slice.

Continue in this manner until all the slices have been traced.

You now have a topographic map of your Play-Doh mountain.

Trade maps with another group and see if you can recreate each other's mountains using Play-Doh!

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