We’ve got the National Geography Awareness Week. We’ve got Kansas Geography Day. But today in Hutchinson, it’s ESSDACK Geography Day.
Four times a year, an awesome group of middle school teachers show up here and we talk social studies all day. And, yes, it is lots of fun. One of the things we’ve tried to do during our sessions is to bring in outside experts from the different social studies disciplines. And today we have Lisa and John from the Kansas Geographic Alliance, sharing some sweet ideas and resources. Get the goodies from today here. Get all of their stuff here.
They shared the prediction that geospatial jobs will be one of the fastest growing jobs over the next 20 years. There is a huge need for kids who understand geography and how it connects to everything. It’s not about the what anymore, it’s about the where.
Need a bit of a taste of their stuff? Read more
The Google StreetView cars have mapped over six million miles of road around the world. And depending on your perspective, that’s either a ton (240 times around the equator) or barely getting started (just a tenth of the world’s possible 60 million miles of road.)
An article in a recent New York Time Magazine shared this information along with an interesting commentary on the state of digital maps. Adam Fisher, the article’s author, claims that over 20 percent of searches made using Google are “where” related and growing. It’s no longer just a matter of searching for the “what” – it’s becoming increasingly important to know the where. The StreetView cars, and the data they collect, are the new Google Search.
And it’s not just where. It’s something called “location-awareness,” the sort of geographical information that our phones and other mobile devices already require in order to function.
In the future, such location-awareness will be built into more than just phones. All of our stuff will know where it is — and that awareness will imbue the real world with some of the power of the virtual. Your house keys will tell you that they’re still on your desk at work. Your tools will remind you that they were lent to a friend. And your car will be able to drive itself on an errand to retrieve both your keys and your tools.
While it’s not exactly clear how or when we’ll get from what we have now to that sort of future, one thing is clear: Read more
Google is freaking me out. It’s got the Search thing going. Google Drive. Map. Apps for Educators. I heard something once about being able to use Google to search for smells.
And now I’m pretty sure it can read minds.
Last week, a group of teachers and I were sitting around talking about Google Lit Trips. There was some great conversation about how Google Earth is an awesome tool for instruction and for student product development. But one of the concerns mentioned by teachers was the learning curve for both themselves and students.
Wouldn’t it be nice, a teacher asked
if Google would just simplify the process and put something online? Something drag and drop?
Yup. You guessed it. Read more
Google probably doesn’t need my help selling any of its products. But I usually end up sounding like an intern from the marketing department at least once a week. I love their stuff.
I especially love Google Earth.
And the more I travel around, the more I discover that many social studies teachers are not fully aware of the different ways Google Earth can save their bacon. As in, engaging and useful teaching strategies that are aligned to Common Core Literacy and College, Career, and Civic Life standards.
So today? Five awesome ways to use Google Earth in your classroom: Read more
I’ve said it before. I don’t think Richard Byrne sleeps. If he does, maybe just a catnap or two. Cause he’s always sharing sweet stuff and teaching school and presenting and, I’m guessing, drinking gallons of 5 Hour Energy. He doesn’t have time to sleep.
Richard’s latest shared piece of sweetness is a blurb about a web site called My Reading Mapped. I had not heard of My Reading Mapped before and since I’m a huge fan of both reading and maps, it looks like a no-brainer. Head over to Richard’s page to get his take.
According to My Reading Mapped: Read more
Okay. It’s more than 2000. It’s way more than 2000. I’m just not sure how many it is and 2000 seemed like a safe, round number. You can find the more than 2000 historical maps using two very cool map finding tools.
Over the last couple of years the British Library has been busy geo-referencing its collection of historical maps. So far 2,236 historical maps around the world have been added to the British Library Map Finder. Need a map of the German defenses faced by Allied troops on D-day? How about a map used by British General Burgoyne at the 1777 siege at Saratoga, New York? Read more