Monday, September 20, 2010

Spatial Genie!

Left image: A river somewhere in South Korea.
Right image: Australian countryside: Hurstbridge, Victoria.

Related sites to the Spatialworlds project
Spatialworlds website
21st Century Geography Google Group
Australian Geography Teachers' Association website
'Towards a National Geography Curriculum' project website
Geography Teachers' Association of South Australia website
Email contact

Where am I??
Adelaide, Australia: S: 34º 55' E: 138º 36'

Spatial resources: Getting it out of the bottle!

Last Friday I attended a ‘think-tank’ at the Education Services Australia (ESA) office in Melbourne on the development of a Spatial Genie for schools to use when developing spatial thinking for their students. Primarily the focus is on the use of web based activities and a spatial tool for geography. However, over time the Spatial Genie will also be applicable and very useable for learning areas such as history, science and mathematics. The discussion was led by Mark Sanders and Olivia Clarke from ESA. As a precursor to the Spatial Genie, ESA has already posted as “Data Genie’ site. The Data Genie uses tourism Australia data to visualise data in a variety of ways. As a pilot site the data Genie is a fantastic start in developing exciting visualisations of data for geography classes.
As for the Spatial Genie the idea is to develop a resource from K-10, incorporating a GIS capacity tool. The old Learning Federation has already developed some spatial thinking tools on Scootle which will be incorporated into the Spatial Genie.

Mark Sanders also compiled a list of sites which provide a really useful library of spatial thinking resources. As Mark says, these links “may be helpful in gaining and understanding of the context for the spatial tools project.”

The following links are to interesting content that has influenced current thinking on spatial thinking:
Haiti aid map
Example of open source technologies including Open Street Map being used in disaster relief efforts.

Google Earth and math
Great ideas for using Google Earth to engage students in Maths.

Learning to Think Spatially: GIS as a Support System in the K-12 Curriculum is a report that can be read here and is the most significant influence on and encapsulation of our thinking so far. It is very compressive to the point of being exhaustive so you may prefer to listen to the following link which is about ten minutes long and gives a great overview of the thinking behind the report.

Spatial thinking podcast
This links to a ten minute mp3 which is a great summary of the thinking behind the report linked to above.

Geospatial revolution
An interesting site from a US public broadcaster which makes the Geospatial revolution mainstream. Also has supporting teacher resources.

Using Google Earth
25 interesting ways to use Google Earth in the classroom.

Dataset visulaisation
This report deals with Interactive collaboration with a dataset. View the video to get a good overview of the system.

Teaching spatial is a collaborative web site devoted to promoting applications of spatial concepts and spatial tools in teaching and learning.

Visualisation tool
This site is a neat data visualisation creation tool.

Free GIS
This website represents an attempt to build a complete index of Open Source / Free GIS related software projects

My World GIS is a Geographic Information System (GIS) designed specifically for use in educational settings. My World allows learners to explore and analyze geographic data about our world.

This work of ESA by Mark and Olivia is incredibly exciting and important for the development and resourcing of a technologically and spatially literate Australian Curriculum for geography.

1 comment:

Jose said...

I just heard about spatialgenie and thought it might help me explain about spatial at a schools career day. However, I just got in, tried the help to get started and it is blank. I tried with chrome and firefox. there doesn't seem to be any contact info on the site to ask for more info. It is actually released or still beta?