Saturday, January 19, 2013

Google Earth

I know this is a popular Web 2.0 tool and that many of you have probably used it before but I have to say it is one of my favorites and I use it with my students regularly. You are able to use Google Earth to show countries, states, cities, and up close views of places such as famous monuments. You can even zoom in on your school, houses, parks, and other places that are familiar to the students. The coolest part of this tool is that you can view Earth, the Moon, and the Sky.
This year with my 2nd graders I used it to show them a close up view of the Moon during our science unit. I was able to show them craters, light and dark areas, and even places where different countries had visited. I was also able to show them what Earth looks like from this view. When studying continents, I was able to show them what each continent looked like and then zoom in closer to look at specific countries, states, and cities.

Google Earth is great for students to see what certain places look like up close. For many students who have never been to places outside of Maryland, it is great because they can go on a virtual field trip to see some of the coolest places in the world. The kids especially love when you change locations and the picture zooms quickly to another location. It gives them a sense of how close and far places are compare to one another. This is such an engaging tool and I hope you get the chance to use it in your own classroom!


  1. I love how you can set-up Google Tours for students that automatically take them to pictures or places you have bookmarked in Google Earth!

  2. Google Earth is a great tool. Why do you think it is Web 2.0 and not Web 1.0? There isn't a clear line, but if you are just getting information (even cool information in a cool way), then it is probably Web 1.0.

  3. Google Earth is a great tool, especially for science. But I did not know you could use Google Earth for monuments! As my students prepare for our Simulated Congressional Hearings this would be a great tool to remind them what each monument was created for, where it is, and how it relates to our Constitutional topics. Technical question: Do I just type in "White House" or can I filter the monuments in the Google Earth toolbar?

  4. When I've used it with my students, I just type in "White House" and it will zoom to the White House. It will be zoomed out and you will have to zoom it in. When you get close up, the picture can get blurry, but the kids still love it. My kids like to find their houses, stadiums, and our school when we have extra time just for fun!

  5. Great tool to be able to show places that students may or may not be able to travel to themselves. Not only being able to show a high up view to get an idea of where the place is compared to other places, but being able to zoom in and see a lot more details is great.

  6. My students and I love Google Earth! I used it this year to show them different constellations in the sky. We also used the sun feature to show the day/night cycle. They were really excited to fast forward or rewind to different dates and times to see what part of the United States was dark and light.

    1. I used it in science too and it was great to explain more about the Moon and what it looks like. I do not think I have ever used the sun feature but it would be good to use with my 2nd graders as they struggle to understand that concept. :)