Guest Blog Post - Using Maps and Vidra To Learn About Contrasting Localities in Geography by Bryn Goodman

The new Computing Curriculum for KS2 talks about ‘selecting and combining a variety of software (including internet services) to design and create a range of content’. I decided to combine the Maps app with a presentation app called Vidra. A mini-project I completed with Year 6 helped to cover this.

Our school has many international links with partner schools all over the world. One of those links is with a school in Australia. This led to our Year 6 staff deciding to plan work in Geography using Australia as a contrasting locality.

As part of this work, I decided to use a feature of the Maps app that comes with every iPad (not to be confused with Google Maps which has lots of other great uses).  Many of the major cities of the world have flyover tours built into the Maps app. Wherever there is a 3D symbol next to a city, you are able to take a flyover tour of that city.

The tour shows you all the major landmarks in that city in a way that makes you feel like you are flying over the city. While this is happening you can take screenshots.

I asked our Year 6 children to go to the flyover tour of Sydney and take screenshots of the major landmarks.

These could then be cropped to get rid of the borders around them. Next the children opened the Vidra app and started a new ‘story’. Vidra enables the children to add text, images, voice recording, icons, slide transitions, background music. All of which creates a very professional-looking presentation in a relatively short period of time. The free version has enough features for use in the classroom.

The Year 6 children created a slide for each landmark. They imported their cropped screenshots. When this was completed, they researched information about each of the landmarks and added this to the presentation. Finally, they added effect like background music, transitions etc

Here is a link to one example of the finished products -

If you would like to follow me on Twitter, my handle is @bryngoodman and my blog is

- Thank you so much Bryn for sharing this fantastic idea! This was one of many ideas shared at a brilliant TeachMeet in Astley last week. The Teachmeet, organised by @Mediashaw, had an iPad theme where REAL teachers shared real, successful IDEAS. These included Bryn's lesson above and also @MissKingsley85's amazing Goldielocks topic. Other ideas included -  @TypingAdvice sharing how to use an iPad to encourage speaking and listening in SEN settings, @NathanAshman demonstrating how to flip the classroom with an iPad and the successful use of Aurasma demonstrated by some other teachers (I apologise as I don't have your twitter handles) to evidence the fantastic work children were producing on their school iPads. Overall, it was a great opportunity for teachers to see how others are using mobile technology successfully in the classroom and I'm sure most were overawed with inspiration!


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