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Dr. Christie's Creating Curricular Units with Google Maps

Creating GoogleTreks™
Using Google Maps




Steps in Creating a GoogleTrek™

Go to Google Maps and login using your Google Account


In the top left you will see a link to My Places. Click on it.

My Places

The image on the right appears. Click on Create Map.


New icons of tools appear on your map that allow you to create your tour.


You now have the opportunity to name your GoogleTrek™ (Curricular Unit), describe it briefly, and choose between making it Public or Unlisted.


On the right is the example of my Earthquake GoogleTrek™.


Be sure to click the Save Button after you name and describe your GoogleTrek™.


Now it's time to travel virtually to the first stop on your trek. Type in the address or landmark you wish visit virtually


In the left column, a list of possible sites that match your search appears.


In the main screen, a map of possible sites that match your search appears.


Zoom in to locate your exact site.


Click on the Pushpin Tool and then click on the exact location of the first stop on your tour.


A window, as shown on the right, appears.


Add a title for the first stop on your tour. See example to the right.


When you click on the default blue pushpin, a wide choice of icons appears. Use any of these icons, or create a custom icon. In the example below, you can see that I choose an icon that represented an earthquake.


Now add a description of the first stop on your tour.


Remember to click Save frequently!


Click on the Rich text button to bring up additional tools, similar to tools within a word processing program. Highlight the text you wish, then change its font, color, etc.


Now it's time to add links to the Web.


Highlight the text that will become a link, then click on the link icon.




A dialog box appears requesting the URL for your external link.


Paste the URL of the web site that will allow learners to click from your tour to the Web for additional information.


Now you text appears as a link: blue and underlined before it's visited, and purple and underlined after it's visited.


You can create links to videos or any other web sites in the same way.


Now it's time to add graphics. You can link only to graphics on the Web. The easiet way to accomplish this is to go to Google Images.


Choose Advanced Image Search.


Type in search words or a phrase and click Search.


A collection of images matching your search appears. Scroll through the images until you come to one will enhance the learner's understanding of the concept.


Click on it and a thumbnail of the image appears. Click on the text See full size image.


The full size image appears.


Copy the URL from the address line, and then return to the Google Map you are creating.


OR: right-click/ control-click for image properties and copy the URL.


Click on the image icon.


image icon


Paste the URL of the web site containing the image you have just found in your image search. Click OK.




Your image appears in your GoogleTrek™.


VITAL STEP: Save all your work. The Save Button is in the left column. Then click Done.


Example of a completed Placemark for Stop # 1 on your tour!


Phew! It get's much easier the second, third, fourth .... time around!


Continue adding push pins with text, images, video, audio, charts, graphs, etc. until you have included all the information your students need to complete this GoogleTrek™.

To Create Custom Icons.

When you add a push pin to the map, the following screen appears.


Click on the blue icon


The following screen appears.


Click on

Add an Icon.


The following screen appears.

Custom Icon

Search Google Images for an appropriate icon:

Custom Icon

Choose the image you wish to use for your custom icon:

Custom Icon

Copy the URL for that image:

Custom Icon

Return to your GoogleTrek™. Paste the URL into the dialog box that asks for the URL of the image.
Click OK.

Custom Icon

Your custom icon appears in your GoogleTrek™.

Custom Icon
Submitting Your GoogleTrek™ to Dr. Christie

Evaluate your GoogleTrek™ using the GoogleTrek™ Rubric:


Click on the Link Icon if the left column (to the right of the My Places Button

Custom Icon

The follwoing dialog box appears.


Click on the Send Button.

sending URL

The follwoing dialog box appears.


Type alice.christie@
in the address line.


Add a message about the grade level and content area of your GoogleTrek™.


Click Send.


Dr. Christie will review your GoogleTrek™ and either:

  • post it on the GoogleTreks™ Site
  • email you to make revisions before she posts it on the GoogleTreks™ Site