Children can make a world globe at home using simple items around the house. It can be adapted to items that are on hand if you do not have exactly what is needed. It can be as simple or as complex as your child needs it to be. The more your child is involved in the process, the more he will understand the connections of landforms and water ways of the earth.
Ideas for Something Spherical
There are many items that you can use to make a world globe. For a simple project, a round balloon with permanent markers will do. If you want something lasting, a large ball can be used, which you can find in the toy section of many department stores. Paper mache can be used if you are looking to create a craft experience as well as a model of the earth. Styrofoam balls are also an easy idea.
Identifying Physical Features
First divide the sphere into equal quarters. You can use markers, paint, yarn, glue with glitter to identify these lines. One line should circle horizontally (side to side). The other should circle vertically (up and down) making an "X" on either side of the sphere. These lines will represent the equator and the Prime Meridian. From these lines, you will be able to determine where oceans and continents should be located. You may make your globe as detailed as you wish, adding mountain ranges, rivers, lakes, major waterways or deserts.
If you're not an artist, and easy way to get the continents on your globe is to trace. Get pictures of the continents from an old map or book, or print the pictures off of the Internet. Make sure the continents are of a close scale (Europe shouldn't be bigger than Asia.). You can then cut them out, stick them on your globe with two-sided tape and trace the images onto your globe with a marker, crayon or pen.
Labeling the globe can help your child learn the continents and oceans and where major cities of the world are. You can make the globe as simple or complex as you would like. It is best to make a distinction between capitals, major cities, countries and continents. An easy way to do this is to make the continents all in upper-case letters. Also accompany names of cities with stars or dots; stars for the capitals and dots for major cities.
A teacher on DonorsChoose.org says that her students learn the best with a "write and wipe" globe, where the students can identify land masses and oceans without the help of labels. Another option for your child could be to have an unlabeled globe that she can use to quiz herself on her geography knowledge.