I recently visited the profile of a friend of mine on MySpace. He had just returned from a trip to South Korea and had posted a map on his profile that showed all the countries he’s visited in his lifetime. I decided to go visit TravBuddy (the site that had produced the map) and check it out. As you can see, I’ve only visited 1% of the world’s countries. My friend has visited 6%.
There is a community attached to TravBuddy so you can connect with other people or blog about your journeys. It is completely free, although there are links to book hotel rooms and other travel-related marketing.
The uses in the classroom that I can see are: the obvious, have students make a map of where they’ve been. They can compare with other students and discuss similarities and differences. They can even blog about particular places they’ve been or do a presentation for the class about somewhere that only they have been. My next idea is to have a classroom map – show all the places the class has “travelled” to this year in geography or in books they’ve read.
You can even make a map of future travels to show places you’d like to or already have a planned trip to. Check it out and post your ideas here — do you see a use in the classroom? Do you already use this or a similar site in the classroom? Meanwhile, I’m planning some trips so I can try to beat my friend’s 6%!