Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Educators Advocate for Google Documents

John Pederson via Twitter alerted me to this video of teachers and principals discussing why they use Google Docs and what they like about Google Docs. The video was produced by Google.
One of the reasons a teacher gave for using Google Documents in the classroom regarding collaboration is what he tells his students, "my idea is perfect... until someone else reads it." The teacher was explaining that using Google Documents helps students and teachers collaborate to make their written work better.

More Street Views for Virtual Tours

On Monday Google announced on their LatLong Blog, the addition of more cities to their collection of street views for Google Maps/ Google Earth. Now you can take a street level look at cities in Japan and Australia. Google also announced the addition of more US cities to the collection of street view options including Colorado Springs, Baton Rouge, Savannah, El Paso, Wichita, and New Orleans.

Below is a look down a busy street in Tokyo.

View Larger Map

Applications for Education
Google Maps and Google Earth are great tools for students to use to create their own virtual tours of places and regions. Google Maps are also great for students to go on virtual tours of places that they might not have a chance to visit in person. The addition of more street view options makes more accurate virtual tours available to students and teachers.

One of the ways that some history teachers have put Google Earth to work in the classroom is to have students create fly-over tours of military campaigns. Google Earth has been used in English/ Literature classrooms by teachers who have had their students create tours of the places a character in a novel visited.