It then occurred to me that this would be a good opportunity to use the MyMaps option on Google Maps. I made an example of a Frank Gehry map to show them what I wanted to do with the application.
To introduce them to using the application, I made a map and shared it with the whole class for them to add two pins each. One pin was where they live now and one pin was where their family is from. I started off by adding my two pins, one in Glen Innes and one in England, and showed them how to add pictures of the place.
The students then added their pins and images.
It was a really good whanaungatanga as we were learning lots about each other and the students were leaning over and saying things like "is that where you live?" .. "is that where you're from?" .. "wow that's really pretty"...
There are a couple of "stray" pins on the map when one or two students decided to pin places like the Fukushima Nuclear Plant. Teenagers!
A couple of my students have made a start on their architect maps, and they are finding it interesting seeing where these buildings are as well as find the information about them to add to the map.
Another thing I have suggested they do, and some of them have started, is use Google Street View to see the buildings in place next to the other buildings on the street. This helps them to understand the effect these designs have on their surroundings. This was something that they have just started but are really enjoying.
Here is an example of a student produced map, about Antoni Gaudi.