Directions for completing A Walk on the Wild Side

1. Join Wikispaces.

1a. Open your Internet browser.
1b. Go to Wikispaces -
1c. Pick a username. My suggestion is to use your school email Username: ex. tcooper66.
1d. Set your password. My suggestion is to use your school password: ex. betsy1022
1e. Enter your email address. My suggestion is to use your school email address, or to use a Gmail account.
1f. You do not need to create a space, as asked in question #4 on Wikispaces. You are going to be joining our project space in the next set of directions.
1g. Click "Join".

If you would like to watch a screencast of how this is done, you can find a link to it on the "Tutorials" page of our parent site, The Networked Learner.

2. Join A Walk on the Wild Side project space.

2a. In the search string on the homepage you see after you join, type in "walkonthewildside".
2b. Click on the link for the site.
2c. If this doesn't work for some reason, type the site URL in the browser's address bar:
2d. Click "Join this Space" in the left-hand sidebar.
2e. Send the project coordinator a short message letting them know who you are where you teach.
2f. Give the project coordinator at least 24 hours to approve your membership.
2g. Once you are a member, you can post information to the site.

3. Email the project coordinator your intent to participate and your school information.

3a. Email the coordinator (Thomas Cooper) at:
3b. Include your school information: School Name; School Address; School Website; School Contact; Contact Email; Contact Phone; Course Name; Ecosystem Under Study; Proposed type of Walk and Proposed Trip Date, Number of Licenses Needed (typically 21).
3c. Post this information to the "Participating Schools" page.

Remember: Each school is typically given 21 licenses; 20 for a school lab and one for the teacher's computer, either in the lab or at home. If you need less or more licenses, please let us know. We will try to accommodate you.

4. Create a class page. (optional)

Each participating school has been given a page where they can upload information about their school and/or class. Creating a page is a great way for other schools to get to know something about your school and your class. It helps to building an online community of trust between us. You can access your page on the "Participationg Schools" page by clicking on the link for your school.

Remember: Do not put up information about students that might compromise their personal security. It is your responsibility to ask administrators, students and parents at your school what your school's Internet policies are and what you can post to the web. It is always a good idea to develop an informed consent document which all parties should sign. Informed consent documents briefly describe the project, inform all involved parties what the information will be used for, and where the information will be stored.

5. Download the Google Earth software onto your lab's computers and register it:

5a. Open your internet browser.
5b. Copy and paste the following URL into the browsers address bar and then hit enter.
5c. Click on the download button. You will need to make sure that you have admin rights to your computer(s). Check with your network administrator.
5d. Follow the download and install instructions.

6. Learn how to use the Google Earth software.

You can find an embedded PDF here that will walk you through how to use Google Earth for this project. Also, a number of screencasts have been created to help you learn to use Google Earth. These screencasts can be found at this site on the "Tutorials" page. New this year (2009) is our monthly live tutorials in our Elluminate room. The dates and times for these sessions are posted in the calendar along with a link to the room under event details.

7. Plan and complete your walk, biking, or paddle trip.

You might want to bring a GPS Unit to record the coordinates of the images and video you take. You also might want to bring along some equipment to study the species you see. I recommend the Garmin eTrek Vista GPS. Students who have an iPhone could use the EveryTrail app.

8. Upload your pictures and video to the Internet.

You will need to upload any images or video you took during the project to the Interent, in order to embed them in your placemark. I suggest starting an account for your class on a photosharing site like Flickr , Photobucket or Web Pisca. Videos will have to be uploaded to YouTube or Google Video.

9. Create a layer with your data.

A layer consist of one or more placemarks containing information about your field trip. You are welcome to use our placemark template, which can be found on the "documents" page, or create one on your own. A number of screencasts have been created to help you learn to use Google Earth and to create placemarks. These screencasts can be found at this site on the "Tutorials" page. If you use the project template (which we prefer to maintain a common theme), we have provided you a guide to explain some of the basic XHTML used in the template and show you where to substitute our placeholder text. and images with your own information. Each placemark should however use the specialized icon for this project, which can also be found on the documents page. Also, please create a folder with your school name, location, and time of year (ex. The Walker School, Marietta, GA - Spring 2009), then put any placemarks you created in that folder before exporting your layer. This will make it easier for us to compile the composite layer, which will consist of a series of school folders with any placemarks you created inside of those folders.

Remember: If you don't have a geek in your classroom to help you out, you can always email me and one of my APES students will upload the data for your school.

10. Upload your layer to the school data page.

Once you have created your layer in Google Earth Pro, upload it to the school data page. To do this follow these directions:

1. Click on the school's layer page.
2. Click "Edit This Page" in the upper right-hand corner. A tool bar will appear at the top of the page.
3. Click on the "image" button right before the TV button. This button if for uploading pictures and documents.
4. Click on "browse" button in the bottom right corner of the dialog box that appeared when you clicked on the "image" button.
5. Find the Google Earth layer file you created in Step 9 on your desktop computer.
6. Click on it and then click "upload" button. The file will be uploaded to the wiki. You should see it highlighted in yellow for a few seconds after it is uploaded.
7. Click on the page where you want the file to be placed.
8. Double click on the file in the upload dialog box; it will appear where you clicked on the page. If it is not where you want it, you can highlight the code and cut and paste it where you want it.
9. Clock "Save" button in the tool bar to save the edits to the page you were working on.
10. Review the information you put on the data page and make any necessary edits.

11. Notify the project coordinator that you need your data added to the composite layer.

After you upload your layer to the data page, send an email to the project coordinator (Thomas Cooper at I will add your information to the composite layer and repost it to the main page.

12. Use the composite layer to have your students study other ecosystems.

If you have any ideas about how we should use this data, feel free to add your ideas to the discussion tab of the data page. We plan on having a Skype conservation with any school interested in discussing how to use this data on Thursday, March 22nd, 2009. See the calander page for suggested completion dates, and Elluminate schedule.