Google Earth is more than just a map that comes to life! It is one of my go-to tools for interaction and discussion in my classroom. There are so many awesome features that I have to just talk about them all!
Most people are aware that you can pop into Google Earth for a 3D tour of the world and they also know the little figure will bring you to street view. Anytime we use Google Earth I have kiddos that can’t wait to find their house. This usually sparks some fun discussion but ends quickly.
The tools Google Earth has to offer really allow students to investigate more of the world in fun and interesting ways. There are Map Styles that allow you to layer different views over one another. The animated clouds feature is awesome to use in science during a climate unit along with the other layers. You can turn them on and off to meet your lesson needs.
The Projects tool combines Google Slides with Google Earth for a neat information or story telling effect with your maps. You can choose the location, add your own images and text to bring your project or story to life. )This is a huge upgrade to Google Tour Builder that no longer exists.) It also saves to your Google Drive so you can’t lose your work! Hurray!
The Voyager tool sparks the best discussion in my classroom, not only does it have pre-made tours, it also has games that encourage students to explore the earth! You can learn about different paces and cultures that you may not have known about before. It is laid out beautifully and is very engaging. It is so cool when students dig in and explore.
So take some time to explore some waterfalls and then tour a museum, Google Earth can take your classroom anywhere! You can pretend to be Miss Frizzle and as she would say, “Where the road ends, adventure begins!”
Have a great week!
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