I would like to announce the launching of a new online resource for math teachers. Real World Math – Using Google Earth in the Math Curriculum provides lessons, activities, and new ideas that bring math instruction into this millennium. Intended for grades 5 and up, this material offers an Instructional Technology approach to learning. Google’s free 3D world of satellite imagery is used in active learning exercises designed to stimulate math students' higher-level thinking skills.

There are currently 20 lessons on the site and more to come with your help. Educators are encouraged to participate on the website's Community page by offering advice, feedback, or by submitting Google Earth lessons themselves. Please visit the site @ realworldmath.org and have a look. Help spread the word by recommending the site to others!

If you've been following the other Google Earth discussion on Classroom 2.0, you will remember that I wanted to bring more meaningful content into my math lessons. Thank you to all of you who added to that discussion and all of your kind suggestions. A little collaboration and some creativity can go a long way. Pardon my bias, but I think a lot of the Instructional Technology tools utilized by educators thus far have been linguistic in nature. Don't get me wrong, I think blogs, wikis, podcasts, and social networks such as this one are terrific, but they have left the math department a bit envious. This is one reason why I have created Real World Math.

And so, I would like to start a new thread of discussion based on my experiences constructing these Google Earth lessons and the website to display them. Primarily in the non-linguistic subject areas, how can we nudge IT experiences that way? How do you conceptualize, design, build, and promote content-based material for a subject such as Science?

Tags: Google Earth, gearth, math, online resource, web design

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All I have to say is "wow." What a great idea, and what a lot of work you have done.
Real World Math sounds like something I have been looking for. I have access to computers for my students and want ways to use them to make math more meaningful.
This site is fantastic! I was looking through the Google Earth Gallery two nights ago thinking of ways to incorporate Google Earth into some early elementary lessons on latitude and longitude and I was amazed by the ideas shared through your site. At the fourth grade level I think I could use modified versions of what you've shared under the Estimation and Polyhedrons lessons.

I have one semi-related question for you. I assume that you used iWeb to create the realworldmath.org design. What program did you use to come up with such a unique template, or were you able to create it inside iWeb?
Thanks Stephanie,
Yes, the website was created with iWeb and I modified one of their templates for the design. I used to teach at the 4th grade level. Follow this link to a blog entry I wrote for beginners and take a look at the Line Patterns lessons. Hope it all works well for you.
A great resource and addition to the Web 2.0 tool kit. I agree that we need to look at cross-curricular uses of Web 2.0 tools. This month we are spotlighting Google Earth, and ways to incorporate it into daily lessons in math, science, and geography. I would love to see some simple (Junior/Intermediate) uses of Sketchup on your site. I'll contribute what I have as well.

Great work!
Thank you Barbara,
SketchUp is a great application. Some kids really get into it and can spend hours creating castles and such. Having them make their own creations in the beginning is a good way to get them motivated and especially for them to learn the tools.
I teach physics and science and electronics (taught as a technology subject here), but am also trained as a maths teacher. I agree that it seems that social software is made for the language arts and social sciences, and that there is not much left for science and maths. In my school, though, the most active users of ICT in the classroom - and the only users of social software, to my knowledge - are in the maths and science departments.

First, let me check that I understand your question - how do we think about/use Web2.0 technologies in our science and maths classrooms to promote content knowledge in our subject?

If this is your question, then, I agree, it's hard work. At our school, the Y10s have a wiki. They do long term projects in it, like there 10 week long media journal. It's still writing, though. However, there are plans to expand it next year to include video taping experiments and embedding them in the wiki, with a commentary and a few other, less writer-ly things. I have just started using Diigo with my Y12 and 13 physics classes. We bookmark useful sites, and then comment on them with questions. I ask a range of mathematical questions as well as describe/explain questions, and the students comment back with their answers. We also use googledocs to create presentations/spreadsheets/worksheets for each other, to take advantage of being able to simultaneously edit a shared document.

Do you think you could clarify your question a little? This is a topic close to my heart, so I'd like to learn more about your ideas.
Wow, I think you answered it, Gwyneth. Your integration of technology into the sciences sounds really great. I would think that communication and collaboration with technology is an important aspect of modern careers in science. I am using Google Docs in a similar fashion and others at my school use video.
I think what I meant when I wrote the entry was more with mathematics in mind. I wanted to break out of the box of traditional math instruction and give the students learning experiences that went beyond tedious drill and practice. I also wanted to integrate technology - or "modernize" if you will, but the resources I found available seemed to be the same type of linear instruction except with a computer. For me, the advances in technology over the past 20 years eclipse the advances made in education. How can we modernize our instruction?
Of course, this network addresses that question, but as a math teacher I found myself scratching harder than others, I think. I had to create what I wanted. I'm sure most teachers are used to that, but I'm assuming there are others like me that would like to have more resources available for non-linguistic instruction. I'm interested in creating learning experiences that transcend the norm.
I agree, mathematics has to be the hardest subject to integrate social software into - and also one of the hardest in which to break free from broadcast and banking models of instruction. Hmm.
This sounds like a great idea. It does answer the age old question what will I need to know this for. This will put math and science in a new light for students. It is a nice change from the normal lecture and book work. Just seeing what they are computing instead of just seeing words and numbers will help them get interested in what they are learning about. This could also help students who have a strong interest in math and science think of a career field that they might want.
Being a student myself who wants to be a teacher, I find this really useful. I think that it is really creative to make the math useful but to also use NETS at the same time. I always enjoyed math but there were always students in my classes that struggled with math and I think that this is a great way to make math useful and to make the children not only be able to use math but to be able to use what they learned in real ways.
I just found this link....I must agree, it does look Great! Thanks for sharing.



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