GE Teach is a fantastic project developed by Josh Williams. Josh and his students were some of the first to use the new version of Google Earth in a classroom. In fact they used it before it was available to the public. (Click here for a video overview of the new Google Earth). The new version of Google Earth works differently than the old version, particularly when it comes to building tours. Josh built a free tool that makes it relatively easy to create and publish tours to view in the new version of Google Earth.
GE Teach Tour is a free tool that you and your students can use to create tours to play in the new web version of Google Earth. To get started head to geteach.com/tour/ then enter a title for your tour. The next step is to give your first placemark a title and to enter a description of the location you’re featuring with that placemark. To place your placemarks in your tour you can either manually enter latitude and longitude coordinates or you can click on the map to insert your placemarks. Finally, to add images to your placemarks you will have to link to publicly available images that are in your Google Drive account or on another image hosting service like Flickr (by the way, linking to images found on sites that prevent hotlinking won’t work).
When you have completed all of the steps to build your tour in GE Teach you will then save the file as a KML that you then import into Google Earth. (Click here for directions on importing KML to Google Earth). Once your KML file is loaded it will play your tour just like the default Voyages that you can find in Google Earth.
Applications for Education
GE Teach Tour could be a great tool for teachers who want their students to create Google Earth tours on their Chromebooks. Students can use GE Teach Tour to create things like Google Lit Trips, to map stories, or to construct a tour of significant landmarks in a region.
We’ll be covering how to use Google Earth and Google Maps in more detail in Teaching History With Technology starting on May 8th.
H/T to the Google Earth Blog.