Google Maps may not initially come to mind when you’re thinking about classroom resources. But did you know that Google Maps can be of great help in the classroom? Google Maps can be useful for teaching subjects such as Geography, History, and Politics. Technology continues to play a growing role in education, providing helpful and effective tools for students and teachers. By utilizing them, there are various innovative ways to incorporate digital tools and visualization into your teaching process.
We’re familiar with all the emerging digital tools being incorporated into the classroom in this day and age, but who would have thought something as simple as Google Maps could also alleviate your lessons? Let’s take a look at the ways Google Maps can help teachers in the classroom.
- Utilizing Google Maps to teach various subjects
- Teaching Politics with Google Maps
- Fun and educational activities using Google Maps
- What is the use of Google Maps in teaching?
Utilizing Google Maps to teach various subjects
Google Maps for Geography class
Google Maps provides an interactive platform to explore different parts of the world. It allows students to view satellite images, maps, and even street views of different locations. Teachers can use this tool to teach concepts such as directions, distance, scale, and climate zones.
Students will get the chance to discover the size of various countries or continents and even “visit” these places virtually. To make lessons more interactive, there are a variety of Google Map games students can try out in the classroom. GeoGuessr for example, is a game where players need to pinpoint their position on the map after observing their surroundings and landmarks if there are any. You could even compete with other online players!
Incorporating Google Maps into History lessons
Since History may be a subject that some students have a hard time focusing on, incorporating Google Maps into History lessons will help make classes more entertaining. Google maps can “transport” them to places of historical events. For example, if they’re learning about the Civil War, then Google Maps can show the location of major battles. They can get a feel of what it must have felt like to be there. Perhaps an experience they can’t get with just a textbook. The whole class could also take virtual tours of historic sites and explore the ruins of Pompeii or the Colosseum in Rome via Google Street View.
Teaching Politics with Google Maps
Google Maps can be very useful in teaching political concepts such as borders, territories, and conflicts. Teachers can use the tool to show students the location of different countries, capitals, and specific landmarks. This will be exceptionally helpful for the visual learners in the class.
The great news is that Google Maps is not only limited to being used in teaching these subjects. There are many other ways Google Maps can help to educate as well as entertain students in the classroom. Let’s check them out!
Fun and educational activities using Google Maps
Learning to navigate on Google Maps
Get students to plan for a school trip. Since the trip does not actually have to happen, students can get extra creative and adventurous in their planning. Have them plan out the route, and find eating spots and attractions they would like to visit. They could save pictures of places and menus from eateries into a folder. Complete with all the information and budget, making a full-board itinerary.
Another idea is taking students on a virtual field trip to anywhere in the world. Explore the different cultures and attractions. If you could share it on a projector screen, it would be as if the whole class is really there, sailing the Amalfi Coast!
Teachers can also have them use Google Maps as a take-home assignment. Over the weekend or the holidays, they could visit a place with their friends or families. Have them jot down important information and take some photos. When class commences, they will have to practice leaving reviews on places they visited. This could also be an opportunity to teach them to be reasonable when writing reviews and to always share a balanced opinion when they are old enough to do so. For example, listing down both the pros and cons of the place, if any. If there are any downsides to the location, remind them to be respectful while leaving constructive feedback.
Going on a scavenger hunt
In this activity, students will have to use Google Maps to search for clues and locate various items or landmarks in a designated area. The clues can be based on geographical features, historical landmarks, or other points of interest. This will help students familiarize themselves with how to navigate using the application. To ensure they were on the right “track”, teachers could question them after the activity. They could also prove that they found the correct location by showing a photo or video or even collecting an item to verify. This activity can be done in small groups to ensure their safety. It will definitely be an enjoyable and engaging way to learn using Google Maps.
What is the use of Google Maps in teaching?
In this digital era and always having to keep up with the use of technology, it is wise to utilize the technological advancements that are available and accessible to us. Without impeding the learning process, technology can serve as a powerful tool for exploration and as means to augment learning.
We hope this article has given you ideas on the fun ways google maps can be utilized to help you in the classroom. Drop us a comment on what other topics you would like in the future. We appreciate it and look forward to hearing from you!
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