Canadian School Geography (Classic Reprint)
Canadian schools have been too long tied down to United States text-books in Geography either adapted or made over. Every paragraph of a good text-book in geography is permeated with the atmosphere of the country in which it is to be used. To adapt or make over such a book for another country quenches its fire and it becomes lifeless and uninteresting. To write a text-book from the Canadian standpoint has been the purpose of the present author. The subject matter, the comparisons, the maps, and the illustrations have the Canadian atmosphere.
This text-book differs in several respects from those with which Canadian educationists are most familiar.
1. The map has been made the centre about which the practical work of the pupil is built up. What the apparatus is to the student of chemistry, and crayons and paints to the student of art, maps and pictures are to the student of regional geography. The performance by the pupils of the many projects in this text will give them such skill in interpretation that, given a proper set of maps of an unknown region, they will be able to write its geography. Not only are the maps to be used in working out the projects but also in reading every page of the book.
2. But to use maps to advantage they must be numerous, of the right kind, and in such a convenient form that they can be consulted with ease and comfort while reading the text. No Canadian text-book in geography has ever had as great an assortment of maps as is given in the Atlas which accompanies this volume. But it is particularly in their character that the maps are distinguished from those found in the ordinary Canadian textbook. The political map with its variegated checker-board of colours, which obscures all those features most important to understand the geography of a region, and which every educational expert in geography condemns, has all but disappeared from the Atlas and we are given maps showing physical features, vegetation, rainfall, temperature, productions, and those other features, which colouring is necessary to distinguish. Moreover, the maps are not so crowded with unimportant names as to blur those other features that it is intended to make conspicuous. Only such names as are likely to be referred to in teaching the subject are given in the maps.
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