Tag Archives: map skills

StoryMap JS — Maps That Tell Stories

StoryMap JS

Continuing with the cartography as writing theme from the previous Persuasive Cartography post, today here’s a tool for using maps to create a narrative journey through a historical event, movement, or even a fictional story.

StoryMap JS allows students to create their own narrative story line through cartography where they are able to chart a path anywhere in the world using real places, from a very broad jump between nations down to actual street addresses.

Have students use this tool to show understanding of the sequencing of events through history (i.e. the Lewis and Clark Expedition), to better visualize a work of fiction (for example, locations in On the Road), or even to create their own original work.  StoryMap allows students to imbed content from YouTube, Wikipedia, GoogleMaps, SoundCloud, or even original images to tell their story.  This can also be used as a stand alone alternative for collating resources on a topic with the added benefit of allowing readers to view the map and journey taken at the same time.

There are wonderful tips and tricks for helping keep maps stories simple yet informative, and the creation interface is very simple and intuitive as well, making this a great alternative assessment for students as they don’t need to fully learn the tool before applying the content.

StoryMap Editor


Potential use in the classroom:  As an alternative to reading, collation of resources, or an alternative student assessment.

Recommended grade levels:  7-12 for creation, but any grade K-12 for simple visual learning.

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Posted by on February 1, 2019 in Websites


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myHistro — Interactive Timelines & Maps


I’m always on the lookout for new and interesting presentation and storytelling tools, and myHistro definitely fits the bill for today!  With myHistro, you are able to create interactive timelines of any event in history, both major events and personal!

Create myHistro stories that integrate text, photos, video, and Google Maps to take students on a journey through the actual events of history on a virtual fieldtrip through the places that influenced the events.  These presentations can be left to play on their own or can be manipulated by the viewer as well.  If you don’t have the inclination or time to create your own, then you can choose from hundreds of already made myHistro timelines that cover almost every time period in history.

Another benefit of myHistro is that with creating your own timeline, you could have students build their own personal histories or stories, pinning actual locations on a map to correspond with the events in their timeline.  This is a perfect way to work in a cross-curricular setting, either having students research historical figures from other disciplines, creating their own life story, or writing creatively about a person’s life.  Integrating the writing component while using myHistro to organize and bring actual geography into the story can address several needs and standards at the same time.

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Posted by on February 12, 2013 in Tips & Tricks, Websites


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Real World Math — Teaching Math Concepts with Google Earth

Real World Math

Another in a great one in a series of sites that helps you answer that question “when will we use this?” is Real World Math.   Using Google Earth, either on a PC or with a tablet device like an iPad, Real World Math has set up free lessons that will integrate with Google Earth to allow you to teach various concepts to your students using real-life and real world locations and scenarios.

The Real World Math lessons are broken into five subsections that have several modules and files within each.  All you have to do is download the .kmz files and open them with Google Earth. Instructions for the students are pre-loaded when they open the file and Google Earth will take them exactly where they need to be to complete their assignments.  This is a great way to integrate technology into your classroom either individually or through your projector.

The lesson subsections available are:

  • Concepts – Basic math topics, such as scientific notation, estimation, and geometry as well as geographical concepts such as exchange rate and time zones.
  • Project Based Learning – Students are presented with a location and a problem to solve.  They must work collaboratively in pairs or groups to work through the activity.  These are usually longer lessons.
  • Measurement – Uses the ruler tool in Google Earth to help students understand areas, estimation, and measuring geographical features.
  • Exploratory – More “non-traditional” concepts such as fractals, tessellations, and map-making.
  • Space – Uses the new Google Moon, Mars, and Sky features to take math activities out of this world!

Video tutorials on how to use both Google Earth and the Real World Math download files are available to help familiarize you and your students with the program and features needed to work through the lessons.  Make sure that you first go to the “Contact” section to apply for a free password to the Teacher area where you can find more information about the program and lesson plans.  All you need to submit is your name and email!

Also of interest: 

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Posted by on December 12, 2012 in Websites


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