GeoCarta Has Moved

Mar 25, 2007

Using GPS to Turn Kids on to Geography

There's a good article in today's Bowling Green Daily News about how the Kentucky Geographic Alliance and Western Kentucky University are using handheld GPS units for a scavenger hunt as a fun way of introducing kids to geography.

More from the Daily News:
The second annual scavenger hunt - dubbed the “Geo Fest” - was organized by Scott Dobler, a professor in the geology and geography department, and Kay Gandy, a professor in the curriculum and instruction.

The Kentucky Geographic Alliance initiative serves to introduce department children and parents to GPS. Those who found the quickest routes to the boxes on Saturday received a Kentucky atlas, Gandy said.
Dobler familiarized Saturday's scavengers with the devices, teaching them how to program longitude-latitude points for the small treasure boxes. He also lectured on the increasing importance of GPS tools.

“All this stuff is popping up on the Internet as the information age goes. It gives us a good idea where we are on the earth's surface,” Dobler said.
After his crash course on GPS virtues, Dobler dispersed the nine child-parent tandems, who scattered but eventually met again at the same point.
Professor Dobler told the Daily News that the kids usually acquire GPS programming skills faster than their parents because of finger dexterity developed from video gaming.