Monday, May 16, 2011

Bright Ideas Press WonderMaps Review

Bright Ideas Press is a family business.  Their life as homeschoolers and love for quality resources that make learning fun and adventurous is what brings you a variety of educational materials.  If you visit their store HERE, you will find unique learning tools in such areas as Fine Arts, Literature and Science.  But, for the purpose of this review I am going to be talking about their amazing Geography and Map Skills program WonderMaps.  This software is a customizable collection of over 350 different maps.  It goes beyond a geography resource.  It is a wonderful companion to a literature, history, science or Bible curriculum. 

With just a click you can select the features you want displayed on your map.  It's like a made to order map!  Would you like rivers with that map?  How about cities or physical features?  Black and white or color?  There are many features to choose from so you can make your map exactly what you need.  WonderMaps includes:
  • 60+ maps of the world
  • 60+ maps of the United States
  • 125 historical maps, including 25 biblical maps favorite!
  • The complete map sets from The Mystery of History vols. I - III, and All American History vol. I & II
 Here's a great video tutorial on how to use WonderMaps.
Amazing, right?  I was excited when I read that WonderMaps included maps for The Mystery of History.  My son and I love MOH and because we love it so much we do all the map photocopying from the MOH book and the research in various atlases to find all the unique mapping needed as we travel through the MOH book.  It can be laboring, but it's necessary to truly reap the benefits of that curriculum.  WonderMaps was answer to prayer for me.  All of the atlases we had accrued were neatly and conveniently packaged in WonderMaps and...oh! easy to create.  Most of the time I spent on WonderMaps using it for the purpose of this review was in creating and exploring the maps for our MOH lessons.  My son and I did play with the other maps offered.  He particularly liked the maps for The Middle Ages since currently his favorite fictional reading is all from that time period.  I was even more pleased to find that WonderMaps was only $49.95 making it affordable.  Imagine having a customizable collection of over 350 maps right at your finger tips!  Just create and print.  It's that easy. 

WonderMaps is compatible with PC and Mac.  You will need Adobe 9.0 or higher, but you could download that for free HERE.

I can honestly say that I don't have anything negative to report about our experience with WonderMaps.  We did not encounter any technical difficulties.  We did not personally find any errors in the maps (although I am truly a geography novice).  It was simple enough for my 11 year old son to use.  Above all, it has made my life soooooo much easier!  To top it off, you can load this software onto up to 2 computers in the same family.  So, I was able to put it on our desk top and our laptop.  That makes our mapping portable and I like to be able to take our school and resources wherever we go.  WonderMaps offers so much that it is impossible to share all the details here.  I can tell you that you will not be disappointed.

 Any products reviewed by me as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew have been given to me free of charge in order for me to provide you with an honest review of the product and/or how we used the product within our family. I do not receive any other form of compensation for the reviews posted on this blog

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