New “Map Projections for Babies” Board Book Helps Encourage Early Communication and Learning

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Dan Ford explains how support from the geospatial community will help bring the “Map Projections for Babies” board book to life.

When my daughter was a few weeks old, I held her in the early mornings while I designed maps. I softly narrated descriptions of what the maps taught us about our planet. As she grew and we read books together, I was inspired threefold by her curiosity, my own love for maps, and a growing number of board books that condense complex concepts for babies.

When my wife and I decided to make homemade gifts for my daughter’s first holiday season, the idea for Map Projections for Babies was born and I wrote and illustrated the first copy for my daughter.

Map Projections for Babies is a board book that explains how we unwrap the round Earth to make flat maps. Vibrant illustrations show unique map projection examples, ranging from common shapes – like circles and squares – to intricate shapes – like hearts and butterflies. The book describes the way size, shape, and distance change on different projections.

I shared the book with a few parents and members of the geospatial community and they expressed interest in getting a copy of the book. I decided to set up an all-or-nothing crowdfunding campaign to create an opportunity for the community to raise funds for a first print run at no risk to Backers.

After receiving input from editors, I finalized the design and ordered sample copies from the printer. I’m working with a printer based in the U.S. that focuses on quality and safety. A 100% United States supply chain means that the process of ordering the books will be as efficient as possible.

Dan Ford is running a Kickstarter campaign to support the publication of his "Map Projections for Babies Board Book.
Dan Ford is running a Kickstarter campaign to support the publication of his “Map Projections for Babies Board Book“.

Since the goal of this Kickstarter campaign is to raise the funds for a first print run, a majority of the funds will go straight to the first purchase order. As soon as this campaign successfully funds, we’ll work with the printer to order the books, and we plan to deliver your books in April of 2021.

As part of the Kickstarter project, I decided to create some unique rewards. Backers can pair their book order with a onesie with the phrase “I Love Maps” spelled in a toy block design or a map art print that features unique projections of a shaded relief Earth. Contributors can also choose to order different quantities of the first edition board book. Special discounted rewards will be available throughout the campaign.

Map projection for babies board book

If you’re interested in supporting this campaign to bring Map Projections for Babies to as many families as possible, visit the Kickstarter project and select a reward.

The crowdfunding campaign launched on GIS Day, November 18th, 2020 and closes at midnight on December 18th, 2020. Books and other rewards will arrive in April 2021.

I truly appreciate the community support this project has received so far and I hope that this book will spark a curiosity for learning that will grow along with Baby.

Visit the Kickstarter: Map Projections for Babies Board Book

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