Zoo Maps

And yet again the Let’s Explore blog provided us with a fantabulous activity: creating zoo maps. You print out some zoo maps, and have your children use them as inspiration to create their very own zoo. I printed out the zoo maps she recommended, explained the basic concept to the boys, and let them go. Eli spent the whole time with the Oregon Zoo map, drawing lines all along the pathways to show where he “and his friends” were going. Henry, though, got really into the whole thing, and spent days drawing his map (he has been kind of dashing off a lot of quickity-quick sketch art lately, so it was awfully nice to see him focusing so much on one piece). He decided his zoo sections would be shaped like the world map, and animals would live in the appropriate sections. I highly recommend this activity! We loved it!

Comments (5)

  1. SereneBabe February 18, 2010 at 9:31 am

    Y’know, Maya went through a dash-it-off phase a little while ago, too. Wonder if it’s “developmental?”

    Have you seen these? http://www.susanstriker.com/anticoloring.html

    They are a dream as far as inspiring lots of great thought/attention/focus on Maya’s part. Love them. Similar idea, really. A great prompt question and they run with it!

  2. Julie February 18, 2010 at 12:15 pm

    So funny, I just gave Henry an Anti-Coloring Book to work on during school vacation! I had them when I was little and LOVED them. There were some other similar ones in the bookstore too, but I liked the Anti-Coloring Books the best.

  3. Anne February 18, 2010 at 1:12 pm

    I used to love the Anti-Coloring Book! It seems so 1970s to me; I can’t believe it’s still around.

  4. emily February 18, 2010 at 3:10 pm

    I remember being a little terrified by those – “draw God” I remember. but my mom is an artist, going through art school when I was in elementary, and insistent, SUPER-insistent, that I do everything myself and create on my own. sometimes I just wanted lines, you know, or something to copy? this zoo thing seems like a happy medium – you can trace existing drawings and use them to tell stories like Eli, or go off from them like henry! wonderful!

  5. Christina February 19, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    Susan Striker is great and I agree with much of her teachings- but after reading part of her “Young at Art”, we call her the art nazi because she is so specific about how you are to treat kid’s art: never throw ANY of it away (eek- I haven’t followed that one), never praise a child’s artwork (eek- done that), they should only use one crayon/brush, etc at a time (try telling a 2 year old she can’t have the whole pile of brushes). It’s a little heavy duty.

    The other day Erik was telling me how at his kindergarten the teacher used to circle in red any marks that went outside the lines of their coloring page. I guess anti-coloring books hadn’t hit N Dakota yet in the early 80s! He still turned out OK though- he’s designing a playhouse for Nora at the moment so he still has some creative thoughts.

    I love Henry’s map!

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