Knowing where you live on a map

Published 3:48 pm Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Technology is a great thing, and boy has it made life easier on everyone. Need to make a grocery list? Grab your phone. Need to find a new book to read? Grab your phone.

Need directions to head to a friend’s house?

Yeah, you guessed it — grab your phone.

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However, there are plenty of drawbacks to our technology-dependent world.

We hear about some of them regularly, such as more screen time and less actual time interacting with others.  Things that we were once very dependent on, like maps, are no longer used regularly, either.

For instance, reports show many Americans can’t locate themselves on a map.

There have been reports for years that most of us are terrible at Geography, a subject that some argue doesn’t matter as much thanks to Google Maps.

However, we’re not as concerned about whether someone can locate Saudi Arabia on a map, although we think it’s worth knowing.

We’re more concerned about whether the average, every day Alabamian and Georgian can locate themselves on a map.

The Birmingham National Weather Service — which covers Chambers County — posted on its Facebook page in April that they asked more than 100 high school students to circle their home county on a map of Alabama. More than half of those students did not circle the correct county. 

Knowing where you live on a map is important in general, but it’s vitally important when bad weather starts moving through. Knowing your home county — or wherever you are at the time — allows you to know the importance of weather watches and warnings.

It only takes a couple of minutes to learn and remember the county you live in, and it could be the difference in life or death.

We encourage parents to not only review the map themselves, but also to teach children where they live as well.

It may also be a good idea to learn the counties around us, even the ones in Georgia.

Although it might feel like Georgia is a solar system away sometimes, knowing those counties could be vital if weather moved to the west.

Take a few minutes to learn where you live on the map. It’s worth the time.