Mission 005 — Latitude and Longitude

Mission 005

Need a fun, cross curricular way to introduce Latitude and Longitude to your students?  Here’s a Math/Social Studies Lesson using spies, secret codes, and google earth.  What can be better than that?

It addresses Math SOL 4.15, 5.14 and Global Studies SOL GS.1.

First, make sure students understand how to use Google Earth to find specific points on Earth using latitude and longitude.  You will want to make sure that the status bar in google earth is showing (View>Status Bar) so that you can clearly see the latitude and location of your point on the globe. You will also want to cut off all layers except those that show countries.

If you are using the Google Earth App on an iPad (or iPod), make sure to change a few settings.
Check out How to Change Settings in Google Earth by Tina Coffey on Snapguide.http://images.snapguide.com/static/js/embed/script.min.js

Students also need some background in finding patterns in a series of numbers.  It may also help if they’ve done a bit of code breaking before (although it’s not necessary).  Then, present groups of students with their secret envelope and access to Google Earth, and sit back to see what they can figure out!

Here’s are the documents to create your own Mission packets:
Mission 005 – Latitude and Longitude

I’m working on a follow up STEM activity that has students designing their own codes.  I’ll add it when I’m done.

 

Explore the Barrier Reef with Google Maps or Google Earth!

The newest edition to some of the fascinating resources in Google Maps/Earth, is the ability to tour the Ocean, complete with reef wildlife.  To explore some of these locations, you will be using “Street View.”  Here’s a quick video on how to use it:

Great Barrier Reef

Hawaii
There are other collections too, including the Amazon, Antarctica, Historic Italy, World Landmarks, Nasa, and much, much more.
You can visit all the collections here:
If you find anything that helps your teaching, leave a comment here and let us know!

Oliver the Geobug Update

Just wanted to let you know that the Oliver K. Woodman Geobug is now in a travel bug hotel in Portland, Oregon!  He has already traveled 2254.5 miles!! 
A travel bug hotel is a geocache that is located near a highly traveled place–like an interstate.  This one is located outside a hotel near the Portland airport.  This allows lots of geobugs (travelbugs) to move in and out of the cache quickly and travel far.  We’ll cross our fingers that this will happen for Oliver!
The Oliver K. Woodman Wiki

The Oliver K. Woodman Wiki

I’ve updated the info on the Oliver K. Woodman wiki  and included the note the geocacher left too.  You can find it under Pictures and Videos.   

Ruler in Google Earth

Ruler in Google Earth

If you are following Oliver with your class, take a second to view his map on the wiki.  You’ll even see a link where you can open it in google earth.  Once in google earth, you can use the ruler tool to measure the distance he has traveled.  You can also measure how far he has left to go!
 

Google Earth Updates!

The new Google Earth update offers some new features you might want to check out. It will take awhile for us to get the update in the labs (and we might wait until it’s out of beta), but meanwhile, with your teacher laptop and the Smartboard, you and your students can take advantage of these new features! (Feel free to download this new update by clicking here)

Historical imagery
Ocean floor and surface data
Simplified way to create tutors

Here’s a quick video outlining some of the cool, new features!

Google Earth Lesson Plans

passportcover.jpgHere’s another great resource from the VSTE conference: It’s a Small World After All…Integrating Google Earth into the Virginia Standards of Learning. Sarah Walters, an ITRT from Loudoun County, has put together a nice collection of lesson plans and files to use with Google Earth. My favorites that I’ve seen so far is the Passport for a Virginia Traveler that goes along with the regions of Virginia (4th Grade Virginia Studies). There are also files that go along with the books How to Make an Apple Pie by Marjorie Priceman and Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey, activities for migration, and even a Google Earth file for Ponce De Leon’s Voyage. Thanks, Sarah, for sharing all these great ideas!!