The Size of Africa

Examine the two maps, then answer the questions below:


Behrmann Projection

Mercator Projection



  • What is the difference between these two maps?
  • Which of the two maps is the most accurate image of Africa in the world?

Discussion questions:

Answer the following questions on your own, and then discuss your answers with a partner. Make sure to get a discussion happening.

  • What happens when we see maps of Africa that show it being very small?
  • How does that influence the way we think about Africa?
  • What do we think when we see maps that show the United States being just about as big as Africa, even though in reality Africa is much, much bigger?
  • What do you think now that you see how big Africa is?

Go on to Images of Africa or return to Activity Two.