How To Read Maps? What Do They Tell Us About Land And Water?

How To Read Maps? What Do They Tell Us About Land And Water?

How To Read Maps? What Do They Tell Us About Land And Water?

Map reading is the act of interpreting or understanding the geographic information portrayed on a map. Through map reading, the reader should be able to create a mental pathway of the real-world information by processing the symbolized information shown on the map.

There are different types of maps to choose from. You want to be sure that you have the right kind of map for your purpose. A tourist sightseeing map will be of no use to you if you’re in secluded parts of the mountains.

Here, given below, are few different kinds of maps:

Topographic Map: This details the terrain, roads, distances, and points of interest.

Road Map: A great help to have on road trips. GPS-free and extremely reliable.

Tourists map: Useful for city breaks. They show the attractions and points of interest around a city.

Along with the right type of map, you will also need to choose the right scale:

1:50,000: The most common scale to use while hiking is 1;50,000, which means that for every centimeter on the map, there are 50,000 centimeters in real life. Maps are broken into grids. Each grid measures to 2 centimeters which means that every box on the map measures up to 1 kilometer in real life.

1:25,000: These more detailed maps show features such as trees and rocks on the ground. These maps are scaled as every 1 centimeter is 25,000 centimeters in real life. Each box on the grid of these maps is measured as 4 centimeters which means that every box on the map covers 1 kilometer in real life.

There are also a few features on every map to be sure of and know well:

Legend: Gives a description and guide of the different features on the map.

Title: Tells you what area the map is.

Grid reference: Grid boxes with the first 2 or 3 digits being the x-value, and the last 2 or 3 being the y-value.

North Arrow: Tells you which way is north. It always points to the top of the map.

Scale: Tells you what the scale of the map is (1:25,000 or 1:50,000).

Now, there are certain steps to learn how to read a map:

Find where north is: Place your compass flat on your map, pointing towards the top and rotate yourself until the compass’ needle points north.

Finding your location on the map: When trying to locate your position on the map, it is most important to be able to identify your surroundings and relate them back to your map. It can be difficult to figure out your position from any grid reference so the ideal thing to do is to start from a grid reference that you do know. If you drove to your current location from some other place then it is advised to try and retrace your steps from the location you set off from. Look around for landscape features once you are sure of your location, these can be mountains, rivers, roads, etc.

Contour Lines: These are small black lines that wave around the whole map. Each contour line on a 1:50,000 scale map represents a rise of 10 meters above sea-level. Every 5th contour line will be slightly darker to make it easy to count when counting many lines.

CAROLINA’S SMITHSONIAN SCIENCE FOR THE CLASSROOM is a brilliant and efficient way to teach young children the skill of map reading especially in today’s digital age when so many people depend entirely on mobile connectivity and GPS. Students learn the patterns of land and water on Earth and how they can represent those patterns with models, including maps. Schools in Middle East, including Dubai partner with Carolina to deliver effective lessons through practical project-based methods.

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Reasons Why Young Readers And Parents Love E-Reading Platforms

Reasons Why Young Readers And Parents Love E-Reading Platforms

Reasons Why Young Readers And Parents Love E-Reading Platforms

Children often make excuses when it’s time to pick up a book and read. They find it boring and lack the focus that’s required to comprehend the verse from a story book. If you are one of those parents who have to pester and bribe your child to sit still and dedicate 30 minutes to reading time, then be assured that you are not alone in this bitter-sweet battle!

Apps That Make Reading an Enjoyable Experience

If you don’t consider yourself as a bookworm to have a dedicated reading bookshelf in your home, but still wished your child made diligent efforts to read, then we have a perfect solution for you. Simply navigate to the Google Play Store or Apple Store on your mobiles or iPads and search for ‘best reading apps for kids’. Your search query would be answered with 1,000 of relevant reading apps that are free for download. Some of the popular names amongst them are; Learn with Homer, Reading Rainbow App, Hoopla, and the Highlights Library Reading. Now let your child’s reading journey begin! Children will be amused by the app’s themes, meet new characters, interact with the platform, and learn new things, without feeling obligated to fulfil the mundane task of reading

Why should you encourage your child to read?

It’s important as a parent for you to give your child that push that is required. If you sat down and explained to your child about the many short-term and long-term benefits of reading then they would probably shrug it off as a passing remark. On the other hand, the child would get excited If he won stars for reading and collected gold coins on his way to becoming a fluent reader. It is said that ‘if you want to please your child, you need to be one yourself’. Most reading apps are gamified and come power-packed with lots of interesting activities to keep the child engaged for a longer period of time.

How do these Reading Apps Motivate Kids?

Free apps offer a variety of books to improve your child’s reading skills. So, if your child likes a particular genre of fiction tale, biography, short stories, or even poems, then he can pick that type of book and start reading it on the app. If the child wants to take a break then he can easily pause and get back to it later. It is extremely easy to access these reading apps and its user-friendliness gives the child a sense of independence. As mentioned earlier, the in-apps awards and reward points further boost the child’s self-confidence and they resume the ‘story’ with more enthusiasm.

Improves Pronunciation

Children can read stories aloud on the reading apps and learn the correct pronunciation through the apps. When children read a sentence, it is auto evaluated and a score is reflected to indicate the accuracy with which the sentence was pronounced. Some apps even have an in-built read aloud features by which the sentence is read in audio mode. Now the learner simply repeats it and the more he practices, the better he gets at pronouncing words. Also, when your child reads the story out loud, more than one sense is being used like, eyes to read, mouth to speak, brain to adapt the information and sense of touch to use the touchscreen on the smart device.


You can use the reading app from any part of the world. So, if your child is in Dubai or some country in the Middle East, they can still access it easily without any fuss. Few apps provide the option to download books so that learning is continued even in offline mode when one might not have access to the internet. These apps can be easily downloaded on any electronic device such as smartphones and tablets. You can fit these devices in your bag easily and even take them wherever you go, so your child will get quick access to these apps. The best part is that they won’t have to wait at a library or a bookstore to buy more books as they can simply open the reading app and start imagining to be as beautiful as Cinderella.


Children love it when they get rewarded with something because it makes them feel like they’re being appreciated. The Highlights Library reading app goes one step further to appreciate every child’s reading skills by rewarding them with stars or points after they complete reading a certain number of pages. This motivates them to read more.


An instant feedback is way more effective than being corrected at a later date. Feedback ensures that child doesn’t repeat the same mistake while ‘pronouncing a word incorrectly’ or ‘misspelling phonetic sounds’. The feedback is given by a virtual tutor who is experienced and expert in the field. So, you don’t have to worry anymore about your child going wrong.

More About Highlights – Highlights Library is a digital reading platform that will help your child discover their love for reading. Highlights Library offers thousands of books that are easily accessible online. It helps in improving every child’s imagination by offering a variety of genres for children to choose from. To begin your Highlights reading journey simply visit: whether you are located in the UAE, GCC, or reside in any other continent, across the world.

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Learning Math on Mobile App vs. Tutoring

Learning Math on Mobile App vs. Tutoring

Learning Math on Mobile App vs. Tutoring

Learning in a school setting is something that most of us are used to, until the pandemic hit the world and sent it spiraling into a state of surprise. There were a lot of changes made that took a while to get used to, from offices to transports to grocery shopping, but no change was harder than schools having to conduct their day-to-day activities online. Classes conducted online had teachers scrambling and students confused regarding their studies. In such times, a fairly old yet untried method of education was opted for – online education.

Today’s digital age students have greater access than ever before to a range of mobile applications designed to act as supplemental education resources. This transition may have been a surprise but it also turned out to be a boon for some students.

Subjects like English Literature, History or Geography were easily taught and studied online, but the problem arose when a subject like Mathematics came into the picture. A subject like Maths needs hands-on work from both teachers and students as it is one of the most important subjects that is used across fields of work. Many then wondered how this would be done.

We look at some points discussing App learning and In-person learning:

The obvious convenience of eLearning

With interactive learning resources being available at the click of a button, education can be accessed anywhere at any time. No longer is there need to travel to and fro and adjusting schedules or face other such inconveniences. Families can take these apps anywhere their device can travel, meaning that on-the-go learning is now a reality.

Different ways of learning

It’s been scientifically proven that kids learn in different ways. Some are visual learners; others gain knowledge by reading and still may need hands-on teaching to get their brains going. The beauty of eLearning apps is that they aren’t limited to one format of learning. Their interactive nature makes them visually engrossing as well as ignite parts of the brain to play competitions and earn reward. They can play math games with rich graphics, simple text and challenges that stimulate the brain.

Instant, Personalized feedback

Students want prompt and personalized feedback for their efforts. A simple “good job” or “needs improvement” is not good enough. A personalized feedback highlighting the students’ strengths and what needs work helps the student feel like the teacher cares and is paying attention. Critique and praise should be customized when possible. E-learning apps are very useful here. Being automated, there is no lag time between the module completion and resulting scores. Moreover, the apps will re-route the student to missed questions and provide hints to get the correct answer rather than simply talking about the scores or the attempted questions.


The cost of hiring in-person tutor depends greatly on the specific program, the instructor and the length of time of enrolment. Most mobile learning apps are a very cost-effective option. There might be a fee for download and in-app purchases to customize the information and this saves hundreds of dollars every month. For this reason, a lot of the parents are thinking of opting for mobile learning apps for their children and the rest, are slowly turning towards the idea. Without any overhead, such as lights, franchise fees and more, these apps can deliver the same robust educational resources, only at a fraction of the cost.

To experience how good eLearning can be, students and parents need Mathseeds. Mathseeds teaches kids aged 3-9 the core maths and problem-solving skills needed to be successful at school with fun, highly interactive and rewarding lessons. The App is available for download all over the world, including the GCC Countries in the Middle East. Mathseeds combines highly structured lessons with fun motivational elements that keep children engaged and keen to learn. Your kids can start learning with Mathseeds anytime and anywhere there is a computer, phone or a tablet – just click the ‘free trial’ button to get started. If you reside in UAE, including Dubai, simply visit our website to learn more.

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How Do Animals Use Their Senses to Communicate? Carolina’s Module for Grade 4 Learners.

How Do Animals Use Their Senses to Communicate? Carolina’s Module for Grade 4 Learners.

How Do Animals Use Their Senses to Communicate? Carolina’s Module for Grade 4 Learners.

Nowadays, countries such as Dubai, in the UAE are focusing on STEM education curriculum programs that equip students with inquiry-based science instructions and help them draw parallels between theory and the real world. With academic science becoming more and more interesting with each passing day, early learners are spending a large amount of time studying how the bio-diversity around them functions.

What is Animal Communication and how do they use their senses to communicate?

This interesting topic of life science is a part of Smithsonian Science for the Classroom’s new curriculum that is aligned towards grade 4 learners who are eager to explore the realms of life science and animal communication. Humans are not the only species that can understand and transmit information, animals communicate with each other in their own unique way. They usually tend to emit different kinds of signals that include visual, auditory, chemical (pheromones), tactile or other touch-based cues. While such communication usually occurs between animals from the same species, there are multiple examples of animals from different species communicating with each other using their senses.

How can grade 4 students learn about Animal Communication?

Amidst animals, one can notice a diversity of communication practices that essentially help the fauna survive, establish their territory, protect their young and co-ordinate with the pack. This is precisely why a module such as this one is extremely fruitful for sparking an aptitude for life sciences.

The Smithsonian Science for the Classroom Kit for this module comes with various materials that help learners investigate how animals use their senses to process and transmit information. It includes a 1-use-module, a 1-use-refurbishment set, a 3-use-module, a 3-use-refurbishment set, a student activity guide or a reader and a Spanish component bundle. In over 15 lessons and 20 class sessions, students will be able to successfully use the materials and understand how animals use their internal and external senses to assess the world around them, process information, communicate and react to different situations.

How does Smithsonian’s Science for the Classroom module benefit students?

Carolina takes pride in bringing together excellent STEM curriculum programs and has been providing world-class support for science education for the last 90 years in countries like GCC, and all over the Middle East and beyond. The Smithsonian’s module on How Do Animals Use Their Senses To Communicate for grade 4 learners is a part of a new curriculum series by the Smithsonian Science Education Centre. In this module, students get a chance to focus on life sciences, physical science and engineering. They get to analyse structures that support animal senses and investigate how information is processed in their brains.

Moreover, they get to analyse data and determine how memories can affect human behavior, design and test a method of sending information about a picture using 1s and 0s and short and long flashes of light and construct an argument based on testing with models for which firefly flash patterns are the most effective for communicating to find a mate. Students also get access to a plethora of digital resources that support this module and enhance their in-depth understanding of animal communication.

Today, science is not merely a theoretic subject for early learners; it’s an escape, where they can learn about the most surprising aspects of life. And the experience has become even more enjoyable, thanks to Carolina’s interesting modules for elementary school students. No matter where you reside, Carolina’s strong foundation will continue to relentlessly support all your scientific endeavors.

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Creative Writing Techniques for Kids

Creative Writing Techniques for Kids

Creative Writing Techniques for Kids

Children have a limitless imagination. Growing up in today’s world where everything is at the tip of your fingers, where you can read, watch or buy anything from any part of the world with a little time spent on the internet, it is important for today’s kids to exercise their creativity and craftsmanship. Harnessing this creativity to create extended pieces of creative writing needs guided input from both parents and teachers. 

Encouraging children to write a story of their very own can give them an enormous confidence boost, as well as help them improve upon their literacy learning by putting their phonics, grammar and reading skills into practice. 

The way writing and literacy is taught has changed a lot in the last couple of decades. From teaching with a blackboard and having whole hours of handwriting practice and learning spellings without any idea of phonics, the children today are being taught in ways that make today’s learning more fun and interesting.

Here are some ways you can help children to write creatively:

  • Get children to use their senses: When you ask a child to write something or begin the story, ask them to use their senses – taste, touch, smell and sight and imagine describing the setting of the story to someone. Children can also use a method of writing called “show not tell” where one must describe the character or the situations without spoon feeding the reader, for example, if a character is sick, then you can write that “he felt chilly and his head was throbbing” and not just state that he is sick.
  • Urge them to notice the world around them: Many children often have trouble setting off on an idea. Creativity is organically achieved and sitting in your room for a long time while wanting to write about new worlds and places and people can be met with its challenges in some time. Ask the children to go out into their neighborhood or their favorite spot in the town and watch things unfold and to note down anything that interests them. Noting down interesting things will create a bank of ideas which might prove to be of use even in the future.
  • Get them to tap into their interests and hobbies: If your child is interested in BMX bikes or Dinosaurs or Space or Music or other things, ask them to tap into their love and interest about it and try to implement it into their story. Doing this will create attachment to the characters and further his understanding of the plot and the story altogether. You may want to organize a visit to the museum, skate parks, concerts or some other place depending upon the child’s interests in specific things and places. Writing about places that they may have visited before on vacation and pulling from real experiences may better their chances of writing a more well-rounded and successful story.
  • Explore genres: Urge your children to read from a wide variety of genres. This expands their understanding of writing styles and topics while also building their reading knowledge of classic novels or other such works. This ensures that your child has a better understanding of the world around and what they could possibly make of it.

Reading Eggs is a multi-award winning online programme for kids aged 2-13, with eager users in cities like Dubai, including GCC Countries, that offers children easy and effective learning. It is an excellent way to help children build essential reading skills. Over 91% of parents in the Middle East or the UAE noted improvement in their child’s reading ability within weeks. It is designed to get kids reading fast and has been met with a high satisfaction rate.

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Participating In School Debating Competitions Is Beneficial To Students

Participating In School Debating Competitions Is Beneficial To Students

Participating In School Debating Competitions Is Beneficial To Students

Debating is an annual affair in most schools across the world. Special debate competitions are hosted to encourage children to come forth and argue on a topic that has been picked by the institutes judging panel. The topic of debate can be generic or specific, as per the student’s level of understanding and their ages. Some interesting debate topics are as follows; Who is responsible for keeping our planet safe, the Government or its people?, Is remote learning effective or is physical schooling more apt?, Is it okay to serve junk food in school canteens?. Basically, the topic of debate can be anything under the sun, from current affairs, to socio-cultural, politics or even controversial.

What is Debating?

Debate is nothing but a discussion about an issue or a topic, that needs to arrive at a resolution based on the concrete points shared by the teams. For debating to materialize, there needs to be two sets of teams each picking an opposite side. One team is ‘for’ and the other is ‘against’. That means, if the topic is – Should marks for extra-curricular activities be considered while calculating the grades of high school students? The team which is in favor of the marks being added to exams, will find evidences to support statement, and the other team will try to prove why it is Not beneficial to add extra-curricular marks in report cards, and why schools should only consider the written exam marks.

Benefits of Taking Part in Debates for Students

There are numerous skills that students need to learn through their years of schooling. Debating gives children the opportunity to develop these skills further and boosts their confidence.

Enhances Critical Thinking Skills

A debater needs to not only think fast, but also present innovative ideas across the table. To be able to do this successfully, one is constantly processing information and thereby developing their critical thinking skills further. Debate participation increases problem solving skills as students have to rationalize complex information and arrive at a counter argument to defeat the opposite team. Learning to think clearly and decoding the facts, goes a long way in making the student more capable.

Improves Research & Reading Skills

In order to be well versed and confident about the topic you are in favor of, one needs to spend time researching and read thoroughly. Trying to bring forth points that the judges may also not be aware about, creates an impression and adds to the team’s brownie points. This is only possible when one has complete knowledge of the subject and has prepared a well revised draft to present at the competition. Highlights is one such platform that supports the student’s journey of reading. The Highlights virtual Library has more than 2,600 books and students can site examples and use idioms from the books that they have read, to support their win at the debate competition. Schools in the Middle East, including Dubai, encourage students to utilize the Highlights App to their advantage.

Boosts Presentation & Speaking Skills

In order to go up on stage and speak in front of an audience requires courage. Children need to take the first step to fight their fear of the stage. Taking part in a debate competition is an excellent platform for students to practice, before they advance to inter-school competitions and other state level opportunities. Practicing in front of a mirror, rehearsing and with adults, helps students find a comfortable body language, posture, voice modulation, and take care of other aspects, before they actually start speaking on the mike, before an audience. In the future, when they graduate from school and enter college, the learners will already be attuned to appearing for presentations, and won’t find it as challenging as others naïve students.

Better Academic Performance

The student develops a good habit of reading, researching, practicing, etc. which ultimately helps him perform better in school. Just like the debater is well prepared to speak, the examinee is confident to appear for an exam. Hence, IB Schools in UAE, including GCC Countries, now arrange for frequent debating competitions and encourage students as young as 2nd graders to grace the stage and speak. Moreover, the skills learnt at an early age will stay with the child for life and go a long way in helping them reach the pinnacles of success.

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