Do you think you have what it takes to be a trailblazer? In the Ultimate Explorer Guide , follow along as modern day explorers unearth ancient mummies, encounter wild animals and use the latest technologies in space travel. This book features explorers of all kinds: paleontologists, biologists, photographers, artists, conservationists, and more.
An explorer is someone who investigates the unknown or unfamiliar in order to learn about it. The unknown can be geographic (a place) or it can be an experience or idea. Because they go where others haven’t, geographic explorers are often associated with certain personality traits like bravery, confidence and curiosity. Their adventures make great stories!
There are many well known explorers from history, especially from the period know as the age of exploration when the earth was not fully explored or mapped yet. This was the time of Columbus, de Soto, Magellan and many more. In the following centuries humans added the exploration of space. The first space explorers are well known too – Armstrong, Glenn, Shepard & Aldrin.
Use the resources on this page to learn about the explorers of the past as well as those today who continue to discover new frontiers on earth and beyond. You can also learn about the tools and technologies explorers have used to help them navigate to new and unexplored places.
The device on the right is called an octant. It is an Artifact at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis . “An octant is a navigational tool that is similar to a sextant. It was used mostly to determine latitude at sea. It measures angles by observing the sun or stars and the horizon in reflecting mirrors. It is called an octant because the maximum angle it can measure is one-eighth of a circle, or 45°. This octant was made around 1800.”
Websites, Activities & Printables:
- PBS: Free Online Video Series: World Explorers 
- DK Find Out!: Explorers 
- Library of Congress – Discovery and Exploration 
- National Geographic Kids: Meet the National Geographic Explorers 
- Interactive Map: Exploration of North America 1492-1700 
- The Mariner’s Museum: Exploration Through the Ages 
- Printable: Blank Map 
- Printable: Create a Compass Directions  and Pattern 
- Printable: Create a Globe Directions  and Pattern 1  & Pattern 2 
- Printable: Exploration Crossword Puzzle  & Answers 
- Printables: Mariner’s Museum Online Games & Printables 
- Online Activity: Homemade Compass 
- Online Game: You Wouldn’t Want to be a Polar Explorer 
World History in Context: Age of Exploration  is a database you can use in any IndyPL Library Branch or at home. Login using your IndyPL library card number. World History in Context will show you biographies, magazines, videos and more about explorers.
Biography in Context: Explorers  is another database you can use in any IndyPL Library Branch or at home. Login using your IndyPL library card number. Biography in Context will show you biographies, magazines, videos and more about world explorers. Pick a name from their list to learn more about that explorer.
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