Computer technology provides an exciting new view of our familiar
places. Specifically, we use ArcExplorer, a Geographic Information
System (GIS) viewer, and Cosmo Player, an Internet browser plug-in
that supports manipulatible 3-D images.
start with aerial photographs (DOQQ's) on which they can find
their own houses and school, and then, as their inquiry evolves,
incorporate digital geologic maps, NRCS digital soils maps,
TIFF's from satellite imagery, census data, detailed cultural
and infrastructure data, aquifer data, TIFF's from LIDAR images,
DEM's, earthquake and hazards maps, and historical maps and
photographs. The instructional method and digital data sets
guide students through an open-ended inquiry of rich data sets
that allow students access to topics and data from current BEG
Students develop inquiries as they study this information and
the relationships between data sets, starting with very local,
very concrete data and moving to increasingly global concepts.