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Map Reading

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Introduction

Reading maps using symbols is an essential part of the map. It provides a lot of information in a limited space. Map symbols are easy to draw and read even if you can't ask someone for directions because you don't know the local language. You may use symbols to collect information from maps.


What are Symbols?

A symbol is a shape or object used to represent something else. Symbols are often used to refer to different things in different situations. Different symbols and colors are used on maps to mark important places such as hospitals, train stations, and schools.


Symbols Used on a Map


Symbols Used on a Map


What are Maps?

A map is a pictorial representation of all or part of an area, usually displayed on a flat surface. A map is an image that provides information about a place. For example, a map of bedrooms might show where beds, dressing tables, and wardrobes are located. A map of a city or region shows streets, highways, schools, or places of interest.


Maps are very useful and important to us. They help us navigate different places and give us directions to different places with the help of directions symbols present on the maps.


Map of a Community


Map of a Community


Map Reading

Reading a map is the process of looking at a map to see what is being displayed and how the cartographer(a person who draws or makes maps) described the map. This includes identifying the objects or phenomena depicted, the symbols and labels used, and information about the map that may not appear on the map.


Map Reading


Map Reading


How do Symbols Help in Reading Maps?

Maps are easy to draw with symbols and are easy to understand without asking anyone for directions as we don't know the language of the area. Symbols are made up of individual points, lines, or shaded areas on the map. They have size, shape, and (usually) color. Map symbols collectively represent details that lead to shape, relative location, distribution, and structure.


The best way to read a map or directions is to use symbols. You can use symbols such as lines, shapes, shades, or colors to easily find specific landmarks or directions. Buildings, roads, rivers, bridges, trees, railroads, and many other elements make it impossible to draw a map in real shape and size. So we use specific symbols, shades, colors, images, etc. to display the map line. This symbol provides a lot of information and helps to read the card.


Summary

We have learnt about maps, their types, the symbols used on a map and how these symbols can help us to find directions. Map reading is an exercise which can help us in many ways. When you grow up and learn to drive, this reading will help you locate many places across the world. You can practice what you learnt till now with the help of a worksheet given at the end of this article.


Map Symbols Worksheet

Use Maps and answer the questions

1. Answer the following using the given maps.


Directions on a Map


Directions on a Map


(i) In which direction a hospital is situated?

(ii) What is situated between 1st and 2nd street?

(iii) How to reach the restaurant from main road 2?

(iv) By what symbol hospital is represented?

Answers:

(i) Hospital situated right to 2nd  street.

(ii) Market lies between  1st and 2nd street.

(iii) More straight on main road 2 then reaching in front of 3rd street turn right to reach the restaurant.

(iv) Hospital is represented by a plus(+) symbol.

Last updated date: 21st May 2023
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FAQs on Map Reading

1. Define the term symbol.

A symbol is a shape, or object used to represent something else.

2. How are maps useful?

They help us navigate different places and give us directions to different places.

3.How symbols help to read maps?

You can use symbols such as lines, shapes, shades, or colors to easily find specific landmarks or directions.

4. A person who draws maps is called?

A person who draws maps is known as a cartographer.

5. What is map reading?

Map reading is the process of looking at a map to see what is being displayed and how the cartographer described the map.