Association of American Geographers
About AAG Membership Annual Meeting Projects & Programs Education Publications Calendar Of Events Jobs & Careers

GeoMentor Case Study:

Brandon Gillette

City/State of School, School District, or Group: Olathe Public Schools, Olathe, KS

Grade level of students you or your educator collaborator work/worked with: High School (9-12)

Subject/topic of class/group you assisted your collaborator with: Global Science, Geoscience, AP Environmental Science

Approximately how many students were engaged in GIS activities through this collaboration: 50

How did you connect with your collaborator? Steve was a colleague when I began working at Olathe North.

Describe your collaboration process. Steve and I had the opportunity to co-teach for a year so we were working with students 2-3 times per week in some cases. But generally a couple of times a month.

Describe the tasks you assisted your collaborator with. Steve had been doing field work at a birthing center in rural Haiti. He would go once or twice a year and collect data on access points to drinking water. Students then worked to map transportation routes and distances from water access to the birthing centers. This helped locals in Haiti begin to create a plan to upgrade or construct new well sites based on access to transportation and where families were located. At the time we were working with ArcView 7.0 I believe. Students had access to class sets of laptops. We initially began with some Mapping Our World resources to get students introduced to the software.

What available resources, if any, did you use or help your collaborator use to implement GIS in K-12 education? Mapping Our World.

What did you gain from the experience? What do you think your educator collaborator and/or the students gained? It was amazing to watch students begin to understand the why of where. Why do we place things in certain areas, which gave them insight where they began asking questions about where other industries build (commercial, schools, utilities, etc.).

Any additional comments about your experience? This was one of my first experiences with GIS and I have continued to work with students on exposure ever since.

Check out more case studies here!

If you're interested in submitting your GeoMentor experience for a case study, we would appreciate you doing so through this survey. The collected information will only be accessible to and used by AAG and Esri program staff and will not be further distributed or posted online unless you indicate your permission to do so.

Questions? Email geomentors@aag.org.