Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Bernie Dodge: Puzzle Pieces

Session Information
Bernie Dodge is a self-avowed map lover.

How can we take advantage of Google Maps and Google Earth in a way that makes pedagogical sense?
It's all about place. Kids hear about history as words - place provides a way to glue these things together. It contextualizes and gives another way to think about it. Spatial abilities reside in the hippocampus - straddles both hemispheres. Historically people have known the importance of place.
Simonides - we have a fragment of his poems - he was at a banquet and was reciting a poem. He went out for a moment and while he was out the hall collapsed - because of his visual memory he was ab le to identify who had been there. The method of loci - where something is located - using place to remember by attaching things to places you already know. There is a connection between place and things you want to remember.

He talked about learning that Mark Twain and Harriet Beecher Stower were neighbours - it became a new way to look at them.

Taking kids outside - is novel - their attention will be activated. If you are in a strange place - activate uncertainty. Walking - triggers the senses - the concreteness.

getting out into communities - taking advantage of the attention that comes from being outside.

Geocaching - his class put together a geocache with travel bugs - one of his students wanted his bug to go to Berlin. He can now share with his students where the bug has been.

Field trips - so much energy spent on permissions etc. the content and forethought of a field trip often go by the wayside.
  • low - no cost
  • easy
  • quick
PlacePuzzle is a map-based activity designed to encourage close reading of a complex text. It uses a limited physical space to priovide a context for learning and includes short-answer clues that require recall and creative interpretation.

Critical Attributes
Resources - to be studied ahead of time
Map -of a related place
Clues -on the map that relate the map to the resources and require both recall and ideation

Optional Attributes
Scores kept based on speed and accuracy
Roles to divide up the reading
- Leaderboard posted publicly (gamers like this)
Clues made available one at a time based on performance (like a treasure hunt)

Communication channel allowing players to collaborate in real time

Chaos in Teheran - place puzzle

Clues - Map
Tinychat - embedded in a page or blog
Real Shoestring -
Google Maps - Google Sites to embed the map (at the moment it doesn't always work)
Type in clues - google forms / spreadsheets / docs
You can know when each team solved each puzzle
Eventually Google Wave

Placemark is a clickable clue
"He worked near here and waited patiently for them to pop the question. The grass nearby might remind you of a dairy pasture" - use clue, readings to figure out the clue

Clue |Possibilites (visual - street view, visual - photos, text - wikipedia, proximity - what's nearby)
Trade Secrets in writing Treasuree Hunt clues (pay for service for creating scavenger hunts)

Curricular Opportunities
historical events
distance - area - shapes
literature - novels,
geography concepts
language learning (street view lets you zoom in on street signs etc.)
current events
Field Trip prep - getting kids ready to go somewhere so they can immerse themselves in a place before they get there
Campus orientation
Earth Science and oceanography

|Implementation possibilities
-timed special event (only available at a certain time)
- self-promotion - promote school
- interschool competition / collaboration - have kids create for another school

Novelty, uncertainty, concreteness, time pressure, competition...

Design steps
- Pick topic
- Identify resources
- Pick locations
- Write Clues

He is working on an interface to help with the design - not quite ready

Google Earth - with street view - you can include different clues

Outdoor Version - change format so clues require you to be in the place. Growth in mobile learning will help kids get outdoors.

Web Site Story - - so hooked on Google Earth we don't get outside to see it. - will be available with examples, tutorials, forum - authoring tool
July 21, 2009 3:59 pm PDT will be live

Very intriguing ideas
Links to session slides

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for coming to the session and for doing such a great job of capturing the essence of it.

    I wanted to let you know that I made a (somewhat important) mistake on the slides when I pointed to The real domain is Someone snagged the plural version the day after my NECC presentation. will go live as advertised on July 21 and will grow exponentially based on reader/user feedback and ideas. I'm excited about what it may evolve into.

    Thanks for spreading the meme.
    ::: Bernie :::