TCLT6 Workshop. Columbus, Ohio. USA. 2010-06-14
Using Google Earth and Google Maps for task-based activities and cultural
(Last updated: 2010-06-09. Also available at http://lingua.mtsu.edu/academic/tclt6)
Jun Da (笪骏)
Middle Tennessee State University
1. Target audience
This tutorial is intended for those who are interested in using Google Maps
and Google Earth for Chinese language teaching and learning. No prior knowledge
about either application is required.
In this tutorial, you are going to learn the basic skills of using Google
Maps and Google Earth, which include
- how to create customized maps in both applications; and
- how to share your customized maps with others.
3. Before you start
It is suggested that you set up an account on google.com to make full use of
the different functions of Google Maps/Google Earth.
4. Using Google Maps
4.1 What is Google Maps
Lars Rasmussen: Google Maps is "a way of organizing the world's
information geographically". (c.f.
4.2 Google maps for different Chinese speaking communities
4.3 How to create a customized map in Google Maps
- Sign in at maps.google.com => Click on 'My maps' => Create new map
- Within the map itself, click on the 'Placemark' icon to add a point of
interest and the 'Lines' icon to draw walking/driving route. Add
your own annotations when prompted.
- When you are done, save your map.
4.4 How to share your customized maps
- You can make your maps either 'public' or 'unlisted';
- In the editing mode of your customized map, click on 'Collaborate' and fill in the
necessary information. The link to your map can be emailed to those email
addresses you put in.
- Note: The link to your customized maps is very long. Copy everything (as
one long line of text) if
you want to share the info via other means (such as posting it on your
5. Using Google Earth
5.1 What is Google Earth
A stand-alone desktop application with more extended
features than Google Maps.
5.2 Download, install and setup
- Download from http://earth.google.com
and install on your computer;
- Set the language to use: Tools => Options => General => Language
5.3 Using Google Earth
- Search for location information is similar to Google Maps. So is tagging.
- Your 'travel' can be recorded with audio annotation.
- Add your own images to Google Earth using Panoramio:
http://www.panoramio.com/. Note that
if you post your images on Panoramio, it will take a month for Panoramio to post
them on Google Earth after a transfer/reviewing process. Check Panoramio's Help pages for details.
5.4 Share your map data
Your map data can be saved as .kml/kmz files and shared with others.
- KML: Keyhole Markup Language (KML) is an XML-based language schema for
expressing geographic annotation and visualization on existing or future
Internet-based, two-dimensional maps and three-dimensional Earth browsers.
- KMZ: an compressed format for KML.
6. Ideas for using Google Maps and Google Earth for CFL teaching
- Authentic materials: Language prompts
- Authentic contexts: Individual and group activities
- Cultural knowledge and learning: Virtual study abroad tours