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Using digital maps

Problem-centred tasks

Creating, reading and using digital maps to visualise and understand the world 


  • Creating a plan of a journey using a car/public transport

  • Getting walking/biking directions

  • Finding the shortest walk to a chosen destination

  • Scavenger Hunts

  • Creating a family heritage map 

  • Comparing neighborhoods across the world


Scaffolding activities

#1 Relevant vocabulary

Students explore the meaning of the words typically used in digital maps, including shortened words (e.g. location, destination, GPS, latitude, longitude, St., Rd., Cres., etc.)

#2 Icons

Students explore the meaning of the icons/symbols typically used in digital maps (e.g. airport, hotel, café, hospital, library, etc.).

#3 Lables

Students label the different functions available on the map application chosen by the teacher (e.g. where to type in the address, how to zoom in and out, how to switch between walking/biking/car directions.)

#4 Experimenting

Students learn how to navigate the digital map suggested by the teacher (e.g. Google map). They experiment with different features (e.g. typing in an address to find location, street view, satellite etc)

#5 Instant search

Students explore Google map instant search - a feature that predicts what is being searched for. Students evaluate which predictions are helpful and unhelpful.  They explain their choices.

#6 Search tasks

Students complete their search tasks and evaluate the routes suggested by the application. They explain which route is more appropriate for their purpose.

#7 Reading maps

Using their search results, the students explain to each other the directions to their destinations.

#8 Getting there

If applicable, students use their own devices (or print outs of their maps) and travel to their destinations.

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