Mapping: Where in the world are you?


The word “local” is often used these days to talk about how far away our food comes from.  It can also be used to describe PEOPLE, as in, “Are you a local?”  I like to think of it as meaning “of a place.” 

What does it mean to you to be local?  How well do you really know your own neighborhood? 

This week’s challenge is to dig a little deeper into the place you call home.  Check out the video below for the scoop:


If you are curious to see how Maggie’s map turned out, here she is sharing about it:

Head outside with paper and pencils and make a map of your space.  It could be your backyard, your land, your neighborhood…whatever works.  Make sure to add the 4 Cardinal Directions-North, South, East, and West.  And don’t forget to add key landmarks like:

  • Your favorite tree
  • A water source
  • The trails you often take
  • Any food or medicine (in the garden, growing wild, or even expand your map to your local stores or farms)
  • Any hazards like poison ivy, stinging nettle, etc.

Work together as a family or each make your own map and compare!

Here’s a favorite game to practice your navigation skills!

Number of players: 2
Supplies needed: Blindfold of some sort

*A note about blindfolds: If someone is uncomfortable being blindfolded, remind them they can always take it off if they get scared and need to find their bearings again.

Split into pairs, and help Partner A put on the blindfold. 

1. Partner B carefully leads their blindfolded partner, in a round-about way, to a tree in the area.  The fun of this can be to guide them on a few detours, maybe turn them around, or retrace your steps a bit.  The only rule is to guide your blindfolded partner gently so they can trust you. 

Meet a Tree

2. Once you’ve led them to a tree, guide their hands so they can touch, smell, maybe even taste their tree.  Really take your time with this so you can feel the texture and memorize the details.

Meet a Tree

3. Then, Partner B leads their blindfolded partner back, in a round-about way again, to the starting point.  Take off the blindfold and see if Partner A can guess which tree is theirs!  Give clues only if necessary. 

Meet a Tree

Once they have found their tree, SWITCH and PLAY AGAIN!

Meet a Tree


(Choose one each day and either answer together around the meal table, or write about it in your family nature journal)

1. What does it mean to you to be local?
2. What is your favorite thing about living where you do?
3. What is your least favorite thing about living where you do?  And what’s one small way you can change this for the better?
4. Where near you do you know the least about? What steps can you take to get to know your home territory better?
5. What do you do if you get lost?
6. What new details have you noticed about your own space?
7. What changes did you notice in nature this week?

Click HERE to download the PDF version of this lesson


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