GIS Education News Weekly: Geotech in PhysEd, TSA Geographic Literacy, Map Projections

Geospatial in Phys Ed?

Danielle Grant, a Potsdam, NY elementary school physical education teacher has been named the 2014 New York State Physical Education Teacher of the Year. She's high tech:

Grant uses pedometers, pulse sticks, GPS units, gaming systems, iPads, PowerPoint, the Sportwall, wireless mics and iPods with her students. “The children of today live in a technologically infused world. Using technology within the physical education environment shows them how they can stay connected and fit at the same time,” said Grant.

PhysEd could be yet another place to weave in geospatial technology and spatial thinking!

Wired Series on Map Projections

Wired Magazine has been doing a series on map projections since last July. Here's the archive. (image at right)

TSA Agent Does not Recognize DC as in U.S.

This news story is another way to highlight the challenging state of geographical knowledge in the U.S.

Esri Grant Provides ArcGIS Online to European Schools

There are few details as to which schools or how many will have access to ArcGIS Online to enhance geographic education, but we do know the program will run for three years. This is sort of like ConnectEd for Europe.

Esri has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with European Schoolnet, an organization that works with multiple ministries of education to bring innovation to teaching and learning throughout Europe.

LINZ Tapping High Schoolers to Capture Building Footprints

Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) is offering a contest to Canterbury high school students.

Run by LINZ – with Canterbury University and Environment Canterbury – ‘Building Our Footprints’ is a crowdsourcing competition aimed at digitally capturing ‘building footprints’ in Selwyn, Waimakariri and Christchurch.

It's an authentic, crowdsourcing, geographic experience. ‘Building Our Footprints’ runs from 28 July-28 August. 

Mapping the Underground Railroad in NY State

Local history researchers now have a new interactive computer map and database to use when looking for information about anti-slavery supporters in Chautauqua County.

The map is the combined effort of a local surveyor, Wendy Woodbury Straight, and Doug Shepherd, a retired professor from SUNY Fredonia State. They presented their findings at a Dunkirk Rotary Club meeting, and Nicholas Gunner, a Rotarian, was enthusiastic. The two used a large cardboard map and some colored stickers to indicate the locations of the abolitionists.

Now the map is online and the team is looking for more input from locals. The tech is another story map sort of tool, all open source, called Orbitist. This is the first I'd heard of it.

More Free GIS Courses: Conservation GIS

A new GIS course entitled Sharing Conservation Knowledge is now available on Conservation Training. This is the last course of a six course series designed to teach you the fundamentals of GIS. This course focuses on how you ask questions of your spatial data and how to present your results. 

By the end of this course, you will be able to: 

Define, create and discuss queries in ArcGIS 
Define, discuss, and implement spatial analyses in ArcGIS using the geoprocessing environment 
Define map layouts 
Describe the components of a map layout 
Apply the three considerations when creating a map layout 
Work with map templates 
The demonstrations and simulations in this course were created using Esri's ArcGIS 9.3 software; however, on August 20, 2014 a LIVE GIS Seminar Event will be held to show the functionality taught in this course in Esri's ArcGIS 10.1 software. You MUST register for the LIVE GIS Seminar Event, and you can do so on the Sharing Conservation Knowledge course room page. '

The courses appear to be self-paced and run about 2 hours.

Python Wins!

Python is Now the Most Popular Introductory Teaching Language at Top U.S. Universities

Open Access Geography Journal

Publisher John Wiley and Sons Inc. and the Royal Geographical Society (with IBG) have announced the launch of the Society's first fully open access journal - Geo: Geography and Environment. Geo positions the RGS-IBG and Wiley as world leaders in the publication of geographical research. Geo will begin accepting submissions from July 24. 

How does the money work? Authors, or their institutions or funders pay fees.

Contribute to e-Book: Advancing STEM Education with GIS

This [Esri] ebook will provide compelling stories of innovative ways faculty are incorporating GIS to advance STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) related activities in higher education. As a successor to the existing publication Advancing STEM Education with GIS, the eBook will explore how faculty, staff and students are successfully using GIS to analyze and better understand data in their specific STEM fields.

Details are in the Call for Chapters (pdf). Contributions are due September 1.

Published Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Written by Adena Schutzberg

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