Examples of Google Earth Activities

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Northwest Passage Undergraduate students use Google Earth and information from several web sites to investigate some of the consequences of climate change in polar regions, including the shrinking of the ice cap at the North Pole, disintegration of ice shelves, opening of shipping routes, effects on polar bears, and possible secondary effects on climate in other regions due to changes in ocean currents.
Energy use per capita
Energy Consumption Rates across the USA and the World In this exercise, undergraduate students use Google Earth and information from several web sites to investigate total and per capita rates of oil and total energy consumption in countries around the world.
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Environmental Reconnaissance of a Salt Marsh This is a field and computer laboratory activity that introduces students to using Google Earth, GPS, aerial imagery, and an online plant identification guide to identify and map vegetational and physical environments within a salt marsh. The same methodology can be adapted for use for other environments.
Renewable Energy Undergraduate students use Google Earth and information from the web to investigate case studies involving the use of various forms of renewable energy, including solar, wind, tidal, wave, hydro, and geothermal.
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The Boxing Day Tsunami Students map data from the National Geophysical Data Center and the United States Geological Survey on Google Earth and study visualizations in order to explore the causes and effects of the Tsunami of December 26, 2004. The data includes tsunami runup heights, advance of tsunami wave fronts, and photography. In addition, the students examine evidence regarding the Tsunami of 1700.

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Our Place in the World (Long Island Series) Students explore the local, regional, and global geographic context of Long Island using data posted on the Google Earth Community Forums. The data includes a digital elevation model overlay, a water table elevation contour overlay, and geologic map overlays for adjacent regions.

Other Google Earth activities from SERC:

Teaching Geologic Map Interpretation with Google Earth
This module includes a new approach to teaching map interpretation and locations for teaching structural geology, a gallery of instructional images.

See a complete listing of all Google Earth activities, spanning several geoscience topics.