Sunday, September 07, 2008

Take the Treasure Map Quiz!

Editor's note: Here's a sample from our new companion website for children, Notes from a Miniature Submarine 4 Kidz.

Here's a fun project for boys and girls of all ages. Grab a pencil, some sheets of paper, and a flash light. When you are ready, come back and read on. If you have trouble reading big words, ask an adult to help you.

Treasure Map Quiz

Did you know that the Earth's oceans are full of hidden treasure? That, if you or I were able to locate this treasure and recover it, mommy and daddy would suddenly become very proud of us, never, ever requiring that we go back to school again? It's true! More treasure than you can dream of is hidden in the hulls of pirate ships and merchant vessels that sunk to the ocean floor hundreds, even thousands, of years ago. The only problem is . . . how to find them?

The ocean is a big place, and it is very hard to pinpoint where those ships went down. Sometimes, people who survived those shipwrecks drew treasure maps back to the location. But until recently, people did not have the equipment to travel to the wreck sites and recover all of the lost loot. Even twenty or thirty years ago, it was much harder to get to that treasure.

Do you know what a treasure map looks like? In movies, treasure maps are usually very beautifully drawn, and use a letter X to mark the location of the treasure. Most treasure maps, however, are not so pretty. Often, a fisherman or a scuba diver locates a wreck site by accident. He dashes (or flaps) back to the ship's cabin to record his bearings. But, when he gets back to the ship's cabin, all he can find is a pen and a wet napkin. So, he draws the coordinates on the napkin, or whatever paper he can find. Or (if he is really well prepared) he'll already have a map, and he'll mark the location of the treasure on the map with an X or a square.

So, when searching for your treasure map, be sure to keep an open mind. They come in many shapes and sizes.

Are you ready to take the treasure map quiz?

I sure hope so!

Part One

1. How many of your relatives have spent some, or most, of their lives at sea?

2. If you answered "none," don't worry. I'll explain more ways for you to help in a minute. For those of you who do have mariners in your family, have you overheard them talking about the location of a wreck site they discovered, say while fishing or diving, many, many years ago, and for many years have been planning to return, as soon as they can "get the old crew together," and "get ahold of the right boat"?

3. If so, you might want to poke around in grandpa's chest for a while and see if you can find a treasure map. If you can't find one, you might hint to grandpa later on that you are interested in seeing what a real treasure map looks like.

4. Now, say you don't have any mariners in your family, or you just can't find a treasure map no matter how hard you try... the next step is to grab a phone and do some research. Call all of the friends you have ever had. Do any of them have mariners in their families? If so, repeat steps one through three.

5. Go door to door, looking for mariners. When you find one, charm him with your little explorer smile and ask if he has a treasure map. If he does have one, ask to borrow it for a project for school. Do not mention this website.

6. Once you have found a treasure map, the real fun begins! Take the treasure map you have found, and spread it out on the floor. Using a piece of heavy white construction paper, trace every line and number on the treasure map very carefully. When you are finished, scan your entry and shoot an email to:

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At 3:55 PM, OpenID ramblingsfromthezoo said...

I am not a kid, strictly speaking, but I like treasures. I went through the quiz and did pretty fine for the most part. However, what do you do when your little explorer smile asking to see people's treasure maps brings about a slap or a punch in the face? I am pretty much stuck here, Mr. Eel.

At 3:13 PM, Anonymous Odetta said...

Well written article.

At 2:08 PM, Blogger angelwingz said...

is there any way to find a map without leaving home because im unable to due to surgery

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