AP Human Geography High School Classes in Virginia

Photo of Blake MailhesGeoMentor Volunteer: Blake Mailhes

Location: Virginia Beach, Virginia

Grade level of participating students: 9th-12th

Activity Theme/Focus: AP Human Geography

Number of Participants: 50

How did you connect with your collaborator? I connected with the teacher through the GeoMentors site; however, I knew her through my family and from high school.

Describe your collaboration process. We planned everything entirely via email over the course of a month or two. I asked about her classroom and her classroom needs, and then I went from there to come up with a challenging and fun lesson for her students. She read through my notes, and we went from there.

Describe your tasks/involvement. I shared career related information, as I am a GIS analyst at an engineering firm. I also talked with the students about the different ways that GIS is used in the world and engaged in conversation with them about how they use maps. Additionally, I taught students about the basics of GIS: data and data management, types of data, and advances in technology today.

What did you gain from the experience? What do you think your educator collaborator and/or the students gained? This was such an enriching opportunity for me. I enjoyed thinking critically about my career and about GIS. I loved interacting with the students: their enthusiasm and eagerness to learn was outstanding. My educator collaborator is such a gem; she’s bright, creative, and hilarious. It was exciting to share GIS and geography with everyone and hopefully inspire kids to continue to learn and grow in this sector.

Additional comments: This was great! Can’t wait to keep working with kids in some capacity. Thank you!