Thursday, March 22, 2012
Google Earth in Grade 1
First they needed the skills to navigate their way around Google Earth such as how to search, zoom in and out and street view. As part of our calendar time we opened up Google Earth and searched for a place the star student was interested in, by this time we were approaching Christmas so the North Pole was a popular choice. We then looked at the symbols and clicked on them to learn what they meant, which was another connection to mapping in Social Studies. We also went into Santa Tracker where one of the activities was connected to Google Maps and the students were engaged in zooming in and out of the different countries and looking at the buildings and people. The last day of school before Christmas in the computer lab my grade 1's were having conversations about how what they saw was different than their own community. Wow!
Once I saw most students were able to navigate around Google Earth independently I placed pins for two communities, Lac Labiche and Beaumont, which are both discussed as part of our Social curriculum. Their task was to look at each community and compare similarities and differences to complete a Venn diagram using pictures or words to demonstrate what they noticed.
This tool was so engaging for all the students I will be trying to integrate it into other units and subjects.