Sunday, November 17, 2013

Thing 11: Mapping & Geolocation Tools

Wow - Polly wasn't kidding.... During the course of this week, I have devoted hours (yes, plural) to exploring the new Google Maps interface, and embarrassingly, I think I've only covered the barest of introductions.  

On Tuesday, I started with the introductory video, and then as the week progressed, I jumped into the Google Maps eCourse.  I have to admit, I was only able to complete the first 4 units before I started to lose interest and skip around.  Please don't get me wrong - it wasn't that the content wasn't valuable or useful - it is just an awful lot to digest and it became a bit overwhelming.  I do plan to go back and finish the other unit activities as time permits.  They are valuable exercises.

In particular, I enjoyed the short videos and activities, and I really liked the classroom connections  provided at the end of some of the activities.

I also explored the Google Maps in Education link, and especially liked the World Wonders project, which I plan to use with my 6th grade class later this year.

It is just mind-boggling what Google has been able to do with this web tool!  And a little creepy :-)  My husband just wandered in while I was playing with it, and told me about the YouTube videos of all the bizarre and inappropriate things supposedly captured by the Google van people while filming video footage.  Of course,  I then abandoned my real homework, and took a little side trip.... no driving directions required: