This is a fun cartography lab that I created that can be adapted for any geographic unit of study. Students use latitude and longitude to draw a map (in this case China.) They then identify key physical and political features of ancient China. Then, students use an elevation map and play-dough to create a 3-D topographical map. Finally, they can use technology to explain the empires of ancient China.
I use the History Alive! text, but it can be modified with whatever resources you are using.