Moving at the Speed of Creativity by Wesley Fryer

Visualizing field trip school visitors with Google Maps

Today I created a Google Map highlighting the locations of schools which have sent students on field trips (many of them FREE thanks to a generous grant from Dell as well as funding from the OHA Teen Board) to the Oklahoma Heritage Association and Gaylord-Pickens Museum in Oklahoma City so far during the 2008-2009 school year. I also finalized a process for members of our part-time staff to update this information each week, as we send email follow-ups to teachers regarding our field trip curriculum.

View Larger Map

I’m hopeful that in the relatively near-term, we’ll be able to create and share Google Maps which include embedded digital stories created by teachers and students in our statewide Celebrate Oklahoma Voices project. Our current Ning learning community for the project does allow video contributors to geo-tag their videos, but I’m not sure how a larger map can be displayed which shows links to all geo-tagged video content on the site. The Murmur Project is the best example I’ve seen in the past of a project which connects digital storytelling and oral history with places and locations. Liz Kolb mentioned Murmur as well as MANY other great mobile web projects and applications in her Seedlings webcast interview last week, now available as a podcast.

GeoGraffiti is another mobile-enabled website which can be used in interesting ways for projects which connect stories to places. According to the website’s about page:

Think of GeoGraffiti as a verbal message board for sharing and retrieving Voice Mark™ messages while you are out and about visiting different places throughout the day. A Voice Mark™ is a short phone message that shares information (e.g. opinions, tips, warnings, advice) about a place, an event, a topic, or really anything else you care to share. The name GeoGraffiti is a combination of the prefix “Geo”, meaning earth or land, representing our location-specific focus; while “Graffiti” represents the expressive and informative content marking those locations.

I almost finished listening to Liz’s Seedlings interview during my morning commute and over lunch today, which is how I learned about GeoGraffiti. Her reference to Gabcast and discussion of how classroom teachers are using it successfully to create “radio theater” podcasts inspired me to develop a procedure for teachers and students to use a Gabcast channel I setup for our museum to share reflections and feedback after their field trips. I hope to integrate those recordings into the VoiceThreads I’ve setup for each “characteristic” of Oklahomans exemplified in our “Oklahoma Through It’s People” museum exhibit:

  • Individualism
  • Perseverance
  • Optimism
  • Generosity
  • Pioneer Spirit

Viewing Liz Kolb’s 2007 K-12 Online Conference presentation on “Cell Phones for Learning” is a must. Act quickly if you haven’t seen it yet! By the end of the month we’ll all have 40 more K12Online08 presentations to view and take in, so if you haven’t seen Liz’ contribution from last year watch it this week! 🙂

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One response to “Visualizing field trip school visitors with Google Maps”

  1. […] to Dean Shareski, Sheryl Nusbaum-Beach, Wes Fryer and Darren Kuropatwa for their tireless efforts in putting this all together.  Truly a model for […]