Google Maps in the classroomGoogle Maps in the Classroom is something to have a fresh look at, ten years after it arrived on the scene.  The updates have made it such a useful resource. Both Google Maps and Google Earth offer so many possibilities for classroom use. Google maps has all of the navigation features needed to move from one place to another and Google Earth has far more satellite imagery.

I started making a list of ideas:

  • Study the local area
  • Study a contrasting area
  • Look for the class’s holiday destinations and see how far away from home they are
  • Look at the area that a book has been based in…
  • Look at historical sites and building such as temples etc in 3D using the satellite view or street view.

Then I Googled it! There are so many sets of ideas for use that I decided just to link to some instead.

10 Ways to Use Google Maps in the Classroom has some great ideas but then goes on to the use of Google cardboard, if you have them and a phone to use along with them.

Lesson Ideas Using Google Street View is very primary school age based – this one has some help on using Street view.

The Thinking Stick introduces Earth Picker and My Maps.

Ditch that Textbook collects ideas that teachers have already used. The idea of plotting four miles around one’s schools to see how far people travelled to get fresh water was a great idea I took from there for primary-aged children.

The Edutopia idea for descriptive writing is good, as is the artwork inspiration too.

20 Google Earth Activities for Students has a lot of Google Earth ideas and lesson plans.

Teacher Tech uses My Maps for lots of ideas.

Finally, there is help at hand for any teachers not already familiar with Google Maps: 5 Google Maps Tutorials for Teachers and Students

Google Maps in the classroom
The Great pyramid in street view – walk all around it, look at the size of the people against the blocks!