This week, thanks in large part to the generosity of the Oregon State University extension service, we have been using GPS receivers every day.

First, students formed groups and worked to familiarize themselves with the GPS units by locating and describing spots around the school campus that I selected. They did a great job working together and learning the basics of coordinate navigation.

Next, the student groups went old school, slightly, and used 66 feet of string, protractors, wire flags, and their GPS receivers to survey and map one acre plots on our school field. The variation in accuracy of the GPS units complicated the groups’ ability to be completely successful, but they did a great job collaborating. Our goal was to learn more about George Washington’s first career as a surveyor.

Yesterday and today, the student groups created and hid GeoCaches. They titled each cache and wrote a clue. The groups then swapped the clues and coordinates with each other and went to work on their treasure hunts. Again, there was a lot of very successful group work, learning and fun!

Finally, using Google Earth, we identified the name and location of each DreamExtreme GeoCache.

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