Everyone loves the challenge of a treasure hunt, and that’s exactly what Geocaching delivers!
Geocaching CAN be implemented in the classroom without an exorbitant outlay of money, time or energy. Those with Smartphones can download the Geocaching app and within minutes be on their way to a Geocaching adventure. Those with a Garmin or other Global Position System (GPS) can obtain latitude/longitude coordinates from geocaching.com and seek out their treasures.
Below are some ideas and suggestions for ways to integrate geocaching into ANY content area’s curriculum.
Idea #1: Create a class Travel Bug and deposit it into a local cache. Follow the bug’s journey and map the route.
Idea #2: During a field trip, take a side trip to a nearby cache.
Idea #3: Plant a class cache and watch as visitors log in from all over. Create a map documenting visitors.
Idea #4: Research the history of local landmarks. Create a cache at a location that describes the history of that site.
Idea #5: Investigate and locate Earthcaches via Google Earth
Idea #6: Conduct a GPS Scavenger Hunt on your school property
Idea #7: Identify different varieties of trees in a nature preserve (or on your school grounds) and record their coordinates. Then challenge other students to find the trees given specific coordinates.
Idea #8: Create a cultural cache. Fill a cache with items reflecting your region. Encourage visitors to log their reaction/responses to share with your class.
Idea #9: Organize a community CITO “Cache in Trash Out” Day
Geocaching can be a wonderful tool to enhance student understanding of geography, location and place, science and nature, scientific inquiry, mathematical concepts, physical education, problem solving, teamwork, critical thinking as well as language arts activities.
How I Use It
Everyone loves the challenge of a treasure hunt, and that’s exactly what Geocaching delivers! Armed with Smart Devices, Geocaching allows users to ‘seek’ hidden treasures worldwide. But Geocaching isn’t only about seeking, send a trackable on a journey and log the journey throughout the year! I just released one for our class! Dedicate a ‘bug’ to your class and plant it into a local cache in your area.(There are over 2,000,000 caches worldwide). Throughout the year, log/record the journey of the bug.