Monday, April 16, 2007

Learning by doing

I bowed to the entreaties of my six year old yesterday and let him wear my GPS watch for a bike ride. We put the watch on the table in the garden and waited for it to pick up the satellites, then I set the watch to give him an alert after 800m (the Tristart cycling mark) and off we went along Penylan road and into the park for a few laps.

He took that watch off after the alert was triggered; "it's sweating my wrist" but uploaded the data to the PC and then the motionbased website when we got back.

As we were watching his route play back on Google Maps' satellite view - though he was surprised that the satellite had not photographed the dog that chased him in the park - I was struck by just how much education he had probably got from half an hour's messing about:

  • learning that location devices work out your position from satellites
  • getting good idea of how far 800m is
  • learning what uploading to the internet meant (he showed off the map to his cousins at his aunt's later)
  • seeing examples of photographs from space of his grandparents' house and environs.

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