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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Stimulate Imagination with Books and Google Maps Combo

A blog post on Langwitches got me thinking about some ways that Google Maps might be used to spark students' imagination about the books they're reading. The author of Langwitches, Silvia Tolisano, has created a map on Google Maps of the books she has read and their corresponding geographic setting (I've embedded that map below). Silvia shared on her blog a link to Book Around the World. Book Around the World, written by Bonnie Jacobs, is a blog about books and their geographic settings. Book Around the World lists book recommendations based on the geographic setting of a book's story.

Applications for Education
Using Google Maps in the manner that Silvia has could be a great way for a literature class to track the books they read throughout the year. With Google Maps' new "explore this area" feature students can quickly find more information about the geographic settings of the stories they read. Students could also add a short summary or review of the books they read right on a Google Map placemark.

Another method of using Google Maps alongside literature is to have students create maps of a character's travels in a story. Students could also create a map of an author's life on a Google Map.


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