A New Mapping System

For those who may have forgotten, the five themes of Geography are location, place, human-environment interaction, movement, and region. This year I will be teaching the seventh grade Social Studies standards that have a major focus on Geography and Ancient Civilizations. As I was reviewing the standards and beginning to think about how I want to present them to my students, I took a break to visit the Twitterverse. As I was scrolling through the days tweets I saw a lot of Apple Distinguished Educators tweeting about Apple’s augmented reality capabilities. I found this technology to be very interesting and engaging for my students. Another thing that sparked my interest about augmented reality and mapping was an article written in 2015 by Rebecca Maxwell. In the article Rebecca mentions how digital maps are impacting how people travel and experience places they have never been.

In my Technology and Leadership course that I am taking to earn my Master of Arts in Educational Technology degree I have learned about instrumental thinking and missional thinking. Instrumental thinking is putting the tool or the technology first to inspire an ideas. Missional thinking is determining what the goal or large vision is and then fitting the best technology to that goal. I bring this up because I am worried that teachers will use Apple’s augmented reality in an instrumental thinking point of view. Just because the technology is available does not mean that it fits the goal or the vision. I want to help my students understand the five themes of geography and to develop a map of one of the ancient civilizations that we will be studying. It was be amazing to use augmented reality to enhance a map for the viewers experience, but would it be the best technological choice for my students? I am still in the middle of my missional thinking and trying to determine what is the most appropriate technology to integrate for my students to better understand ancient civilizations and the five themes of geography.

I would love to hear from you if you have any ideas about ancient civilizations or geography.

Image by Ian Kennedy on Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/clankennedy/13470471505

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