As the end of the academic year looms you may be looking for some project-based activities to give your classes. Realworldmath.org provides lesson ideas and resources based on using Google Earth to do real world maths investigations.
One of the many investigations on the site is into the speed and height of the Tsunami waves generated in the 2004 Indian Ocean Earthquake. Click here to view the investigation. All the lesson resources are there for download including the pupil worksheets and the Google Earth files. I ran through the activity and found the instructions to be straight forward and easy to follow. This investigation incorporates many topics including units of measurement, speed, distance and time calculations etc. Whilst the worksheet doesn’t cite this idea, you could also extend the investigation by plotting scatter graphs of wave height vs distance from epicentre to learn about correlations and proportionality.
There are so many potential uses for Google Earth in education. I’m going to commit myself to learning about and using it in the classroom more often!