Basic Coordinates & Seasons

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Basic Coordinates & Seasons – Student Guide

There are three main sections to this module: terrestrial coordinates, celestial equatorial coordinates, and understanding how the ecliptic is related to seasons on the Earth. Each of these sections has its own simulator(s). The background material necessary to utilize these tools is contained in each section.

Terrestrial Coordinates
Work through the explanatory material on units of longitude and latitude, finding longitude and latitude, and a bit of history (optional).  Open the flat map explorer.  Familiarize yourself with the cursor and how it prints out the longitude and latitude of the active map location.  Note that you can vary the central meridian of the map (i.e. change its longitude).
Use the “shift map” arrows at the top of the simulator to affect large rapid changes. Use the shift-click feature of the cursor for finer control.  Note what information is accessible through the show cities and show map features check boxes.  Center the cursor on your present location. Click the open Google Maps button to launch the Google Map tool focused on this location. Experiment until you get a good feeling for the Google Map’s capabilities and then close this window. (Note that you must be connected to the Internet to make use of this feature.)

Question 1: Use the flat map explorer to complete the following table. You are encouraged to try and predict the answers and then use the map’s cursor and other features to check the accuracy of your estimates. features to check the accuracy of your estimates.

Location | Longitude | Latitude | The center of the island of Madagascar. | 47º E | 19º S | North Pacific Ocean | 157.5º W | 21.2º N | Google Map: Hertfordshire, UK | Prime Meridian | 51.8º N | Flat Map: Greenwich, England | | |…...

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