1. Competions: Akshay Rajagopal Wins National Geographic Bee
On May 21, 2008, eleven-year-old sixth-grader Akshay Rajagopal of Lincoln, Nebraska, took top honors at the 20th National Geographic Bee held in Washington, D.C. He won a $25,000 college scholarship and lifetime membership in the National Geographic Society. Akshay, who attends Lux Middle School in Lincoln, did not miss a single question in the preliminary, final and championship rounds.
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2. Books: How the states got their shapes by Mark Stein
Sometimes it’s easy to forget that socio-political boundaries (i.e. those designating cities, states, and countries) are shaped through, well, just that—“social” and “political” experiences. In his new book, Stein provides a glimpse into how and why certain U.S. states’ borders came about. Through the use of history and geography, How the States Got Their Shapes is the first book to tackle why our state lines are where they are.
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3. Maps: Google Maps Adds New Features
Google has unveiled new interactive online mapping features. The upgraded Google Maps now has a “more” button, which allows users to further explore spatial points of interest through links to images and Wikipedia entries. Interested in learning more? Check out this article.
4. Education: “We’re not in Arizona any more.”
Dennis Rees, a teacher at Oakwood Elementary in Peoria, Arizona recounts his inspiring story of traveling to the Galapagos Islands with Principal Paul Bower. During the trip, Rees learned about the islands’ rich biodiversity and shared his own expertise of Arizona geography with local students. Back home, students followed the journey through an interactive blog. The Galapagos getaway was granted by the National Geographic Society and Lindblad Expeditions as part of the Grosvenor Teacher Fellowship Program.