The 5 Themes of Geography: Location

Contributor: Hallah Elbeleidy. Lesson ID: 10477

Where in the world are you? You have wide latitude in finding your coordinates. Maps contain lots of intersecting lines to help locate places. With videos, online games and quizzes, make your own map!


Geography, World

learning style
personality style
Lion, Beaver
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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  • Ever wonder how — wherever you are in the world — you are able to navigate to an exact location on a map?

Sure, your GPS-enabled devices, like your smartphone or the GPS device in your car, help you get from point A to point B, but there’s an elaborate system of lines that divide the earth so this kind of precision is possible, no matter where you are!

  • Can you recall the main ideas of the theme location in geography?

Check over your notes from the initial Related Lesson in this Themes of Geography series, found in the right-hand sidebar. Quickly go over the important points.

The theme of location focuses on just that — LOCATION! Location can be absolute or relative.

  • Absolute location refers to a definite reference to locate a place. The reference can be latitude and longitude, a street address, etc.
  • Relative location describes a place with respect to its environment and its connection to other places, e.g., the ice cream shop is located 4 doors down from the shoe store on the left-hand side of Main Street.

You will be delving into the world of imaginary lines, the lines that divide our planet and allow us to precisely reference any point on the face of this Earth. These lines are called latitude and longitude.



Latitude and Longitude, by Andy Jensen:

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Understanding Time Zones, from Darron Gedge's Geography Channel:

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Strangest Time Zones of the World, by WonderWhy:

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How Many Countries Are There?, from CGP Grey:

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If having a visual helps you understand the material better, check out these maps from Maps of the World:

It is important that you understand the main components of maps and how to identify and make sense of them. Learning the skill to read a map will help you locate places and information more quickly.

world map

Read this Compass Dude article on How to Read a Map. Then, complete this quiz to test your map knowledge!

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Continue on to the Got It? section to practice your geography skills!

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