SketchUp has incredible educational potential. Using free tools available from Google, Disney has added a 3D layer over the entire Disney World property. Every building, sidewalk and tree has been drawn in detail. Above is a picture of the haunted house. This is a must-see attraction at the Magic Kingdom. As you enter the building, there are tombstones with funny names and one with a picture of a face with eyes that move. Zoom in on Google Earth and you can see it below. Click either picture for higher resolution images.
Think of the geography, mapping, history, architecture, engineering (the list is huge) projects that students could do with these free tools. Students could recreate a 3D version of the local school, post office, court house and other significant government buildings. Historical locations could also be added.
These locations would have to be researched. Community officials would be interviewed. Measurements would be taken. Students would learn to use the construction tools available from Google and collaboratively place objects in correct locations.
Layers representing different time periods could be constructed. Students could see what occupies spaces once used by historical buildings. This could be a lot of fun… and a learning experience too.