How I Use It
I create tours for my students that have content, links, video, etc. around subjects we are studying. I like that students are essentially learning Spanish while touring the Spanish Speaking world in Google Earth. I have also worked with 4th grade students to create a tour of the California Missions. The students made placemarks with information they researched based on my lesson. I took their files and put them together into one file to share with the class and their parents to demonstrate the learning in the class. I also worked with a teacher who had students creating files for their book reports in Google Earth so the students were connecting the books they read to the real life setting or other criteria on the map.
Google Earth has layers that have content that ties to a number of curricular areas (science, history, geography...). There are also sites like Google lit trips with content that exists to be viewed in Google Earth and are great for the ELA classroom. My students love to get lost in Google Earth exploring. It can be difficult to create content in Google earth and it can be frustrating to navigate. BUT it is well worth taking the time to learn and explore Google Earth.