Long ago, people wondered about the size and shape of the Earth. They wanted to know what lands lay on other shores, who lived there, and what their lives were like. So they built ships to sail the seas and trekked across foreign lands to explore this big world. These explorers shaped the countries we know today, carving borders, establishing capitals, and settling cities.
But geography didn't end hundreds of years ago. There are geographers today who have the same curiosities. What does it take to be a geographer? It takes some special knowledge of Earth sciences such as biology and geology. It takes some knowledge of people sciences such as anthropology. Above all, it takes a deep desire to learn new things.
You hold in your hands a guide to the countries on planet Earth. You can read about England, China, Brazil, Kenya, Wales, the United States, and many other places. You'll learn about kangaroos and lions, penguins and camels, polar bears and pandas, geckos and blue whales. You'll meet all kinds of people from big cities and small villages. You can read this book from cover to cover or skip around from one chapter to the next. The important thing is to catch the travel bug and to always be curious about everything around you.
The next time you look at a globe, perhaps the world will feel smaller and more familiar to you. Spin the globe and let your finger stop it. Where did your finger land? Perhaps you will have a chance to travel to that country and meet the people who live there. What will you say to them? Think about how you'll describe your hometown and what you will learn about the country you're visiting.