2016 Giant Map


I was just informed that our proposal to receive a Giant Traveling Map from National Geographic was accepted! Three years ago we had the South America map come to Rhode Island, two years ago the Giant Traveling map of Africa, and last year we had the map of North America come to the Ocean state.  Many schools find this a great way to make a fun event for the whole school. 

This year, we will be receiving Pacific Ocean Map which comes with an excellent set of resources.  The world’s oceans are so much more than just the empty spaces between land…and this map brings that to life.  This trunk with lessons and materials can show you how to interactively teach, explore, learn and play with this specific map as a part of your curriculum. This map will soon be coming to Rhode Island; it will be available for schools and teachers to use from March 11th to April 4th.  The Alliance wants to make this accessible to as many members as possible. For schools with RIGEA members, this map can be rented for a free of charge for two days (possibly more depending on demand and the schedule).  Remember that it’s free for teachers, administrators and parents to sign up to become RIGEA members—consider this your chance to recruit them for a good cause for your school AND the Alliance. 

If you would like to simply attend an event with the Giant Traveling map, RIGEA will be hosting a event, free to the public that will feature, use, and explore this map in great detail.  This will be on March 31st (4-6pm) at Rhode Island College in the Student Union Ballroom.


For those interested, please send your request to rigea@ric.edu with the following information

  1. Include the subject line “Scheduling Giant Map”
  2. Select day(s) on or between March 21-April 19 that you would like to schedule the map with at least two alternative dates.
  3. List the names of Alliance members (or future Alliance members) at your school. This can be a “work in progress.”  You can sign them up yourself (with their consent of course).
  4. The name and address of your school.  
  5. Contact information for the person who will be responsible for transporting the map to the subsequent school (phone and email).

The borrowing school must transport the map and trunk to the next school on the list. The map is VERY large (26′ x 35′) and rolled into a 10′ long transportation tube that can transported by a large van with the seats removed or a pick-up truck. Loading and unloading is NOT a one-man job (it’s possible in a pinch, but it is a very serious workout for me).  Please view this video for instructions on how to correctly and efficiently prepare and pack the map for shipping:

Although this is logistically very cumbersome, it is amazing to see students light up while on the map.  Logistically what should you expect? If you have more questions, read here.



The vast blue depths of the Pacific Ocean await students’ inquiring minds and adventurous spirits! This Giant Traveling Map introduces students to the marvels of the planet’s largest ocean, which occupies over one third of Earth’s surface. Students will learn how the Pacific has been both a barrier and a highway throughout human history. They will explore the deepest place on earth – the Mariana Trench – as well as the world’s tallest mountain (measured from the seabed), Hawai’i’s Mauna Kea. Most of all, students will experience the Pacific as a living thing: active volcanoes giving birth to new islands, deep-sea vents supporting unique life forms, phytoplankton blooms providing over half of the planet’s fresh air, and the Great Barrier Reef – the largest living structure in the world.

Accompanying the Giant Traveling Pacific Ocean map are activities and props for teachers to lead students (grades K-8) on enriching and fun explorations. Whether they are tracking a whale migration, acting out the movement of El Niño, tracing the routes of Polynesian seafarers, or circling the “Ring of Fire,” students will be supplied with accurate and compelling information cards, lavish photography, as well as several props, including cultural artifacts, geological models, large foam dice, colored cones, and colored hoops.  Download the full Teachers Guide here.