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Recycling Starts with You!
Lesson 3: Explore Your Earth Contest
Goal: Students will write an environmental story using Google Earth.

Time Required: 25-minute or take-home assignment

Materials Required: How to Enter the Explore Your Earth Contest Reproducible A (PDF); access to reference materials; Internet access; Google Earth software

Directions:

  1. At the start of class, open Google Earth and search for your city or town. Gather students around the computer. Tell them that they are about to learn how to make their own Google Earth information pages. A personal Google Earth page is called a KML file. Creating a KML file is a way to publish research in layers using Google Earth’s geographic (keyhole) markup language. This is an opportunity to research environmental issues and raise awareness of these issues with others.

  2. Have students research an environmental problem of interest and write an environmental story. Use the Google Earth tool to create Placemarks for locations that help to tell your story. Include a description of each location. Use the Image Overlay tool to add photos to each Placemark. Distribute copies of How to Enter the Explore Your Earth Contest Reproducible A.

  3. Once students have chosen an environmental topic, direct them to follow the steps on How to Enter the Explore Your Earth Contest Reproducible A.

  4. If students have questions, Google Earth can help. Have them go to http://earth.google.com/support. From here students may e-mail questions to earth-scholasticsupport@google.com.

Wrap-up: Have students present their content on screen to the class or provide the name of his or her KML files to classmates. Have students respond to each other’s writing in a constructive review of facts they learned by reading their classmates’ published work. Encourage students to enter their KML files in the Explore Your Earth Contest.

Photos, kids: Photodisc/Getty Images; tree planting: Lee Celano/AP Wide World Photos

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Generously sponsored by:
Google

Explore Your Earth Contest!

Students could WIN:
A trip to Space Camp!

Teachers could WIN:
Lenovo 3000 PCs!

Download the How to Enter the Explore Your Earth Contest Reproducible A (PDF) for step-by-step information on how to enter.

Entry Deadline: May 22, 2006

Entry Form (PDF) and
Official Rules (PDF)