Monday, February 02, 2009


The time has come (the walrus said) to get the kids a globe. Evidently, they're a bit pricey. Any recommendations? Are the talky, "educational" ones useful or just gimmicky? I can imagine that a globe with lots of features might be neat-o and interesting to my kids. I can also imagine it as a waste of money.



Stephanie Ozenne said...

My kids are 6 and 2.5, and I got a cheap-o globe at, hmmm, was it Costco one time? I'm not sure. It was definitely under $30. It might not be a bad idea to get a cheap one and then see how they use it / how they want to use it before forking over big bucks. I can definitely see my kids using a fancy-electronic-educational globe, so I'm interested in hearing about those too.

Flibbert said...

I was in love with my globe as a child. It was simple, not sparkly and I think its most fascinating feature was the fact that the mountains were actually raised little bumps on the surface. The globe itself was made some something like paperboard, actually.

In my opinion, you should spend your money on a detailed, non-talking one for a few reasons.

1) I am against buying children things with which they might make more noise. I love kids and I enjoy their exuberance, but they require no help in the realm of noise-making, which will inevitably happen more frequently than I care and at times I find inconvenient.

2) I'm not sure what children would get out of a talking globe. A globe isn't a toy, it's a reference tool. It's something you go to in order to see the spatial relationships between geographic and political entities. And it's something used as a supplement to other teaching tools. So, basically, I have a hard time imagining a globe at our current state of technological advancement as an effective teaching tool in itself even if you add talking.

3) I would wager that the cost-effective talking kinds compromise on accuracy and detail to provide this talking feature that relates in a meaningful way to the map.

4) And if you spend money on a globe designed for children, you'll need to (or just ought to) buy a new one when they get a bit older and out grow a talking globe.

5) I'm a snob about globes and think a talking globe is stupid. And for crying out loud do not even consider getting one of those cheesy "fancy" globes that some people use as decoration in an office. Globes are not decoration! They're tools!

Of course, your children are still pretty small, so I can't really assess how they would relate to a globe.

Sheila said...

Skip the talking ones! The regular simple ones last longer and the usefulness lasts as they grow!

Crimson Wife said...

My vote is for a basic globe and a high-quality atlas.