This lesson focuses on map projection and using a publically available spatial database, called GeoMapApp. Students will learn how to access the database and manipulate public data. A follow-up or supplemental lab could invite students to investigate numerous other datasets, depending on what area of interest the educator is interested in teaching. The lab consists of online resources and requires access to computers and an Internet connection.

  • As an introduction, the teacher should present a short (~15mins) PowerPoint, projections, to the students to provide background information about projections and spatial data. Following the lecture, the students should start the introductory lesson called GeoMapApp Lesson.
  • In the GeoMapApp lesson, students are asked questions about projections and then given instructions to explore some components of GeoMapApp. This provides students an opportunity to understand better the idea of spatial data and resolution. Next, they use these online resources to access real, publically available datasets and get exposure to various types of research that has been conducted around the globe. It also gives the students confidence to explore the data further and teachers a foundation for future investigations.
  • This lesson requires students to have access to computers (preferably 1-2 students per machine) and the access to the Internet.
  • This activity was developed for use in a high school (grades 9-12) Oceanography or Marine science class. It is also appropriate for an introductory level college geoscience class. The goal of this lesson is to introduce students to GeoMapApp. Lesson duration: Approximately 90 minutes.
  • Check students work with the key, called GeoMapApp Key.
  • Teachers should present the PowerPoint, called Projections, to students prior to the lesson. It is also a good idea to use a globe and piece of paper to help the students visualize how the different projections work.

Mercator Projection

Albers Equal Area Projection

Lesson Specifics
  • Grade Level: High School (grades 9-12) Oceanography or Marine science class.
  • Time Frame: 90 minutes.

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