Socially Interesting Stories

Mapping tools are getting scary good. Remember when you saw Google Earth for the first time? Perhaps the single most transformative piece of software for schools. I agree that may be arguable but any social studies teacher not utilizing the
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Mapping tools are getting scary good. Remember when you saw Google Earth for the first time? Perhaps the single most transformative piece of software for schools. I agree that may be arguable but any social studies teacher not utilizing the mapping tools of today are depriving students. Adding to the mix of imagery is augmented reality. Take a look at this video from the creators of Bing maps.

This stuff still makes me say "WOW"! Bringing together vast amounts of data and innovative technologies make for some fascinating applications, applications we are exploring together. As we consider what the learning/school applications might be, and we already know there are many, the ability to attach place to story remains a favorite of mine. Recently Ze Frank encouraged folks to create community walks. A number of folks took him up on that request and using various methods, told nostalgic stories of community, childhood and fond memories. Alan Levine lists a few of these storytelling tools in his Storytelling Wiki. I took the Google Map idea and used Street View to tell my own story of childhood memories.

I'm still blown away by the power of street view but as Clay Shirky has said, "technologies don't get socially interesting until they get technologically boring". I'm not sure these have reached the stage of boring. But the sheer ability for us to use these tools to tell and share stories certainly is getting socially interesting.

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