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August 2012 Newsletter, Stories & Announcements...


Back to school time is upon us and our focus for this August newsletter is all about globes in a learning environment. We hope you find your newsletter informative, entertaining, and valuable.

Step into our "Way Back" time machine...
Nystrom chalkboard globeWe recently came upon an interesting do it yourself (DIY) project for creating a chalkboard globe. Drawing inspiration from antique chalkboard globes (such as the Nystrom 1954 vintage globe pictured to the right), this project allows you to create your own markable/erasable globe.

You can use an old globe with out of date cartography or purchase an inexpensive starter globe such as the Adventurer, Traveler, or Explorer globes. Using an out of date globe that is still structurally sound allows you to recycle an otherwise useless globe, giving it the opportunity to provide many more years of service. Whether you purchase a new globe or recycle an old timer from a thrift store, we recommend you consider the meridian style as you decide which globe to use for your chalkboard globe. You will probably be happier with a more durable metal meridian like found on the Explorer globe, rather than the light weight plastic meridian found on the Adventurer and Traveler globes. After all, you don't want to go to all the effort of creating a chalkboard globe only to have the meridian break and leave you with an unusable globe. If you would like a dual axis meridian, such as the one on the vintage chalkboard globe, the Pioneer or Atlantis globes would be a good choice.

You may also wish to consider the composition of the globe as well as such features as raised relief. While raised relief will certainly add an extra dimension to your finished chalkboard globe, it does make the surface more difficult to write on, especially with a piece of chalk.

While more expensive, an acrylic globe will provide better long term durability and a smoother surface than the three presscraft globes previously identified. The Artline globes, or even the Paris globe featured in the newsletter, would be good choices for a smooth surface globe. All of the identified globes are available for purchase on World Globe Universe. Simply enter the name of the globe in the search box and you will be shown the product information page for your specified search.

Halligan's Chalkboard GlobeTo give credit where credit is due, we found this DIY chalkboard globe at Design Sponge. You can view the complete instructions for creating your own chalkboard globe on the web site. The author (Halligan Norris Smith) chose the Replogle Explorer globe for her DIY chalkboard globe.

Whether you home school your child or enroll them in a public school, we hope you find the DIY chalkboard globe will fire your imagination to the almost endless learning possibilities offered by world globes.

We would love to hear from you regarding this DIY project and how you have applied it with your learning efforts. Was it successful? Do you have similar projects that you would like to share with others who receive our newsletter? Let us know at

Reference Globes and learning...

Reference globes come in a host of different sizes and styles, from simple inexpensive inflatable globes to heirloom quality floor globes. Traditional reference globes all share some common characteristics which you need to be familiar with in order to get the greatest possible benefit. Included among these characteristics or features are the following.

  • An equator line.
  • The Prime Meridian; running through Greenwich England, and the International Date Line; opposite the Prime Meridian.
  • Latitude and longitude lines.
  • Identification of political boundaries. This may be a simple as a hairline outline of individual countries or the more pronounced and visually contrasting use of different colors for individual countries.
  • Place name information, including oceans, continents, countries, major cities and prominent geographic features. As a general rule, the larger the diameter of the globe, the more detailed the information the globe will display.

In addition to the basic features of all reference globes, more sophisticated reference globes incorporate additional features which make the globes more useful.

  • Inclined axial mounting at 23.5 degrees to simulate the axial tilt of the earth. This is helpful in understanding how and why the earth experiences seasons.
  • Degree marks on the Equator and Prime Meridian. (For solid mount globes, they may also display degree marks on the semi-meridian or full ring meridian.)
  • Time dial. Used to calculate the current time at various locations around the globe.
  • Ocean currents and/or prevailing wind information.

Beyond the standard features of all reference globes, there are additional features and capabilities that can enhance your learning experience. Raised relief can enhance the tactile experience while illumination with dual map display can be very helpful in understanding the climate and vegetation as compared with the political boundaries. In addition, the stand and mounting style can impact the ease and versatility of viewing various locations on the globe. The most flexible mounting system is a dual axis mount which allows full access to virtually any location on the globe.

As a benefit to our newsletter subscribers, we would like to make you aware of an informative booklet published by Replogle Globes Inc. It is available at no cost in PDF format. You will find additional information about the various styles and types of globes in our own Globe University.

If you would like to add a reference globe to your home or office, or if you would like to gift a reference globe to help someone you love do better in school, you will find a large selection of references globes on

Thank you for spending this time with us and we'll see you next month!

Larry Murray

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