I am discussing organisms and environments over the next few days with my fourth graders and thought it might be good to show them these environments using google earth. I just downloaded it but typed in rainforest and got nowhere. Is there a feature that will take you to a polar region, rainforest region, desert region, etc.? Help!

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What about typing Brazil? there you may zoom and have a view of the Amazon area!

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Consider Google Earth to be a location-based web browser. If you are floating high above the earth with no layers turned on, you won't get any hits in search. If you float in closer to a particular region, turn on the appropriate layers, and let in load for a bit, you will get some real results.
It isn't that smart, however. Do your search over Manhattan, you will get the Rainforest Cafe.

For more of a science-y virtual earth, you might want to look at another virtual earth browser, NASA's World Wind.

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