Homeschool Creations

Friday, October 23, 2009

Homeschooling with a GPS {Review}


We recently bought our own GPS and our kids have been fascinated by it. They love watching the directions on the screen and 'seeing' where we are going ~ and how far it is. Kaleb, our two year old, has even started shouting out directions of left/right now even when we don't have it in the car.

If you've heard of geocaching, you have a good idea what Educaching: GPS Based Curriculum for Teachers is all about. Educaching takes technology and brings it into the classroom, providing you with lesson plans, activities, and ideas to make learning fun and teach your kids the ins and outs of coordinates and mapping using a GPS.

What Educaching Includes
  • Teacher's Manual {geared for grades 4-8}
  • 20 detailed lesson plans
  • reproducible field sheets and activities to go along with the lessons
  • Information on grant applications {to obtain your own unit to use @ school}
The manual {$32} starts out detailing how to use a GPS and what geocaching is all about, giving information to help 'train' the teacher on the process. The lesson plans cover a variety of topics for various age ranges {12 beginner, 6 intermediate, 2 advanced} and can be used in a large classroom or in a homeschool setting. A few lesson topics: Grand Slam, Dino Discovery, Which Tree is Which, and Rain Birds. You can view a sample lesson on Rain Birds here. The lessons touch on different subject areas: math, language, and science and also provide national standard levels for the various subjects.

Obviously, you will need a GPS or other handheld device capable of mapping coordinates to be able to use the curriculum. The one we have allows us to switch to pedestrian mode, so we didn't have to have a special unit for the study.

My Thoughts

We did the Dino Discovery unit and the kids used the coordinates to find the hidden bones. When they had all been located and mapped on the field sheet, we came inside to put the bones together and 'create' a skeleton.

The Educaching teacher's guide provides enough lessons to keep you busy, but it also will get ideas going in your own mind for future activities to do with your children, and you have the field sheets to continue using with other lessons. If you have a GPS receiver {or know someone who does}, this would be a great way for you and your family to have a little fun exploring and learning together!

To Learn More

Visit the Educaching site for more information or to purchase the product. There are two different options for purchasing:
  • Educaching Curriculum in 3-Ring Binder with a CD with customizable templates for your use. {$32.00 plus $6.95 S&H}
  • PDF format emailed to you within 24 hours ($32.00}
We have the pdf version but I think I would honestly spend the extra $7 to have it already printed out and in a binder to use right away! :)

Click on the Homeschool Crew banner to read other reviews about this product.

Thank the FTC! As a member of the Homeschool Crew, I was given this product to review,
and I do not have to return the product to the vendor. I was not paid for this post.
All opinions expressed in this post are mine.


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