Friday, January 6, 2012

IDEAS for Map-making and contributing to BIG

BIG Kids Magazine is for everyone. Art is for everyone. Everyone can contribute. Grown ups and kids. Artists and gardeners and pilots and kindergarten teachers. Everyone.

We want to make contributing to BIG Kids Magazine as easy as possible.  Here are some ideas for supporting your kids to understand the process of responding to the theme of Treasure maps and helping them enter into an open ended creative process in which they are also guided by simple parameters.

Map to the Land of Islands
Twyla, age 3
 - Think about all the things that are really precious to you. What do your care the most about? Think about all the treasures that are already in your home. They might be toys, books, art works you have created, family, friends, photos, things you have collected, secrets, memories, dreams. Now draw a map of your home showing all these "Treasures" that you have been thinking about.

- Think about a dream you can remember. Draw or paint an outline of your body and then draw everything you can remember about your dream inside your body. This is like a map of your dream. You could draw all the things you wish for inside your body too.

- Collect twigs, leaves, petals, stones, dirt and other things you can find in your garden, or on a walk around the block. Now make shapes and patterns with all the things you have collected. Take a photo.

- Draw 100 lines across a page in wax crayons. Paint water colours or food colouring mixed with water over the lines. What is it a map of? What does it remind you of? Do the lines lead anywhere?

- Choose a marker that is your favourite colour today. Draw one line on the page without taking your pen off the page. It can be curvy, wavy, jagged, rolling, spirally or zig zag. Now hold the paper in your hand and see if you can walk following the line you just drew. Where do you end up?

- Photocopy a real map of a place you have been. You could find one in an old ubd or atlas. Paint pictures of all the things you can remember about being there. You could look at photographs from the trip to remind you, or it could be somewhere you went this morning. Write a poem about all the things you remember about being there. It could be a map of Italy or a map of your local shops.

- Write down everything you eat and drink in one whole day. Get someone to draw around your body on a huge piece of paper and then draw or paint all the food filling up your body. You can draw your lungs and arteries and skeleton too.

- Think about someone you love. Write down all the things you love about them. Cut up all the sentences you have written and paste the words onto a new piece of paper however you like. They could be upside-down or sideways. This is a word map of someone you treasure.

- Write a list of fantastical list of directions to get to a secret place of your imagining and instantly create a micro-map poem!

Map to a secret place no one can know about
Twyla, age 3
Send your work to submit@bigkidsmagazine along with the submission form found here. Ideally we would LOVE your contribution by Jan 14th but the final cut off date is Jan 30th. All suitable contributions will be published on the blog or in the pages of the magazine. We have received some very wonderful maps to where we never expected and can't wait to add your directions to the mix! Be brave and have fun!


  1. Love these ideas. You have such a wonderful way of helping us to look at our worlds differently and more creatively!

  2. Thank you Book Chook, we can say the same of you!

  3. We are just about ready to send our submissions. I especially like the story my 19 year old son who has downsyndrome wrote. (I added the italics) You'll be getting them soon. We are having so much fun these holidays since we found your website and the projects we can work on. Thanks BIG! XXCorrina

  4. This is a fabulous idea. We did a two year investigation into maps and geography lead by the children in our preschool The work, art and ideas that came out of it were inspiring, amazing and sometimes suprising.

  5. Hi Corrina, we are very excited about receiving your treasure - thank you!

    Hi Danielle, we would LOVE to hear more of your maps and investigative surprises. Wonderful!


We love reading your BIG thoughts and really appreciate your comments, thank you!

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