Students of all ages can struggle to visualize three-dimensional landscapes from two-dimensional contour maps. This engagement effort in the middle school classroom incorporated hands-on play with Play-Doh® and LEGO® to reinforce student learning about topographic maps. Students constructed three-dimensional landscapes and further learned about how topographic data can be generated with drones. Findings suggest through pre- and post-test comparison that such efforts support student learning.
Dr. Adam Mathews is an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography at Binghamton University (State University of New York). His teaching and research activities focus on geospatial technologies and methodologies (GIS, remote sensing, and drones) for geographic problem solving. He primarily teaches university students but has also engaged with a variety of K-12 groups and has published a children’s book entitled ABCs of Geography.
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