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TODALSIGS - Maps



TODALSIGS - Maps
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 6 to 8
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.69

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    letter-number, word-TODALSIGS, cartographers, proportional, orientation, relation, human-made, agency, mnemonic, coordinate, unit, grid, perception, compartment, based, acronym
     content words:    Jeremy Anderson, United States, United States Geological Survey, New Jersey


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TODALSIGS - Maps
By Trista L. Pollard
  

1     If you look at the title above, you may think maps have a secret language. Or maybe you thought it was a foreign name for the world "maps." However, TODALSIGS may be the tool you need for remembering the most important parts of a map. This mnemonic (knee-MON-ick) device was invented by Jeremy Anderson. He invented this memory device or trick to help people remember the components of a map. TODALSIGS is also an acronym. Each letter stands for a separate word.
 
2     The title of a map is where you should start. It describes the area shown on the map. The title may also tell when the map was designed. The map's time period is important. Scientists compare maps to see how our planet has changed over time. Historians also use maps to learn about people's perception of Earth. Remember, their view of the planet has changed over time. Map orientation tells how the map is placed on the paper. Most maps have been made with north on the top of the map. An arrow or compass rose will show this direction. However, some maps have been made where north is not at the top.
 
3     A map's date and author are also important. Geographers and other scientists need to know if a map is reliable. The date on a map answers this question. Since our planet changes daily, scientists need to know when a map was designed. This way you can tell if it includes the most recent changes. Cartographers, map agencies, or map companies usually author maps. Take a look in your classroom. You may see maps and globes made by certain companies. In the United States there is an agency that designs maps. It is the United States Geological Survey (USGS). This agency designs maps of the Earth's surface. They monitor or watch earthquake and volcano activity. The USGS maps this activity. They also map water and natural resource areas in the country.

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