The Shower Curtain and Geography Lessons


Burmese Alphabets
Burmese Alphabet


Chinese Characters
Mandarin Phonetic Alphabet

I’ve mentioned in my previous post about my fascination for travel and my dream of living abroad.  My commitment to the idea of teaching our child about the Asian heritage goes way back to even before she was born.  Not surprisingly,  my addiction has spread all over our home and in our lives.    In our previous home, the one in the suburb, our daughter’s room was filled with the Burmese, Mandarin and English letters on the wall.


Planning her very first trip to England, Christmas Eve 2003
This chunky monkey is planning her trip to England, Christmas Eve 2003

So when we moved to our house in the city (with the smallest yard we could find-“Yes!” exclaimed J) I wanted to paint on the wall of her room, a world map.  However, with the idea always hanging in the back of my head about living abroad, I ended up not taking on the challenge to paint that wall.  In lieu of the wall mural, I wanted a map of some type to put in her room to allude to our travels.

Well, months go by, and the walls were still bare.  Life goes on.  One day I was shopping at a Target looking for a shower curtain since we were  having guests over for the holidays.  This means they will be camping out in every space available in the house and shower curtain is a must.   M‘s bathroom never had a shower curtain since we gave her bubble baths and never found it necessary.


I am usually a very frugal shopper.  However, there it was that day, this amazing shower curtain hanging before my very eyes calling out to me.   You would not believe the joy it brought to me because that’s what I’ve been looking for. A shower curtain with a world map on it; I paid full retail price for it without thinking twice about it.  🙂

Each night on nights that I give my daughter a bath or a shower, I usually start a conversation with her about a continent, a country or city on that beautiful vinyl world map shower curtain (hey, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, right?)   I would often point out to her, on the map, where mommy’s side of the family is from and where daddy’s side of the family is from.   Before we go on a trip, we discuss about the places we will and may visit.  We also discuss about the places we’ve been after we return from our trip.  I have found that it is a great way to educate my child about geography.  Believe it or not, the shower curtain’s map was more accurate than expected.  The continents were where they were meant to be. 🙂

world atlas

Soon she will be graduating to a Geographic Encyclopedia.  Thanks to @valvetescape I am encouraged and feel it is timely since I just read a post about the importance of geography.   His post has inspired me as a parent.  I hope one day my daughter will appreciate the education and the memorable experiences we try to provide for her through our travels due to her mother’s obsession to travel and see the world, in person.

33 thoughts on “The Shower Curtain and Geography Lessons

    1. The great thing is that we are NOT packing up everything we own. That’s the liberating part. We will have 5 suitcases at MOST for all three of us. I need to make sure we have our shower curtain and the vita mix! 🙂

  1. Lovely post A. That shower curtain is awesome. Your wee one will thank you for these geography lessons when she’s older. They will make her a true “global citizen”. I am always amazed at how little my Korean students, both children and adults, know about world geography.

    In one of my conversation classes this past semester I had one student who just couldn’t grasp that Mexico was not in South America! His reasoning was that Mexican speak Spanish, so Mexico has to be in South America. I’m not even sure he believed the map I showed him ! 🙂

    1. Hello Alex,

      Thanks for your comments. Great to see you here on our blog. Yes, we love geography in our home as well.

      Hope to see you here again in the future!

  2. What a great and inspiring article. I don’t have kids yet and am hoping to fit a round the world trip in before that part of my life begins. However, I too aspire to teach my children about our amazing world and cultures.

    I’m half Zambian, half English and spent the first half of my life in Zambia and the latter in England. I’m blessed to have fab friends and family in all continents so I really value heritage and open minded knowledge.

    On another note, I am fascinated with my little world globe, and am planning a speech based around it for my next Toastmaster club speech. I desperately would like a shower curtain like yours! No doubt I’ll search the web for one asap. (Incidentally, my globe was brought back as a gift for me from my Grandma when she travelled to Australia at the ripe old age of 83 – travel must be in the blood!)

    Great blog post – thank you!

    1. Hello Sara,

      Thanks so much for your kind comments. Great to see you here on our blog. Speaking of globes, my brother brought back very nice looking globe after he came back from China. It’s actually very nice and sits right on the computer desk. Easily reachable!

      I love that your grandma traveled at a ripe young age of 83- totally inspiring! Go grandma!

      Looking forward to your future visits to our blog!

      Ta Ta For Now! 🙂

  3. Aye,
    I can totally relate to this!! My daughter may be over inundated with travel and geography stuff. She has a world map placemat, a world puzzle, and I always show her pictures of places she’s been to. So far, at 2-1/2 years old, she can only remember Paris and Marrakech (Mahkech, according to her).

  4. what a cute story! i have to admit, one of my favorite aspects of being a teacher abroad is educating my students on geography. some of the most successful lessons i’ve taught were about map reading and cultures around the world. kudos to you for teaching your daughter such invaluable lessons. she will no doubt look back fondly on these early years with you!

    1. Thanks so much Linda. We had a nursery painting project. Many family members and friends helped us with the details of the decoration. So, the hardest thing for me about leaving our home in the suburb was repainting the nursery, before putting the house on sale.

  5. I LOVE this shower curtain – I want one too!! For many years I have wanted a huge wall world map mounted to a pin board so I could pin all the places I’ve been and all the places I am yearning to get to. This shower curtain would be the next best thing. 😉

  6. Thanks so much for sharing this wonderful story. When your daughter ‘graduates’ to the geographic encyclopedia, please don’t throw the shower curtain away! 🙂 It’s too cool! I really admire how you made it a point to teach your daughter about her cultural roots and to get her interested in geography and the world. Hats off to you!

    1. Thanks Keith for your kind comments. I sure am keeping that precious curtain. We’re taking it with us to Thailand because it has so much meaning for our little family 🙂

  7. This is so cool! We love how you teach your daughter where you’ve been and where her mommy and daddy are from! That is so cool!

    You should submit this to a family magazine as a tip to teaching geography!

    Cookie Magazine, NJ Family Magazine, or Redbook (has a great children’s section in it) would love this!

    It’s one of the best ideas ever and we’ll def look for a shower curtain world map when we have kids!

    Great post and thanks!

    1. GuyandGirlTravels: I’ve never done that (submit an article to a magazine) before so this will be my first if I do. thanks for your great suggestions.

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