Global Positioning Devices (GPS)
The Global Positioning System (GPS) is a satellite-based navigation system made up of a network of 24 satellites placed into orbit by the U.S. Department of Defense. GPS was originally intended for military applications, but in the 1980s, the government made the system available for civilian use.
Using inexpensive GPS devices, or examining Web sites that reference such data, students can use GPS coordinates to identify spatial locations and relationships in real life settings. Such information also allows students to experience the practical use of mathematical and scientific topics such as the coordinates, distance formulas, slope, and elevation.