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GPS Educational Resources

For Students and Teachers
Information for Students

What is GPS?

The Global Positioning System is a U.S.-owned utility that provides users with positioning, navigation, and timing services.

Who Uses GPS?

GPS is an essential element of the global information infrastructure. The technology is in everything from cell phones and wristwatches to bulldozers, shipping containers, and ATM's.

Montage of GPS applications

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Career Corner

"This constellation is flown by young professionals — some straight out of high school with some pretty intensive training... some out of college... some of them have engineering degrees and orbital science degrees."

Resources for Teachers

NEW GPS-Based STEM Curriculum

The U.S. government is developing a new curriculum that uses GPS concepts and activities to stimulate student interest in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The curriculum is designed for the middle/high school level and tied to the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).

We seek your help as educators in testing out the core lesson plans in a real world classroom to see how well students respond to the material. Your feedback will help us improve the curriculum prior to its final release in 2018.

Check out the draft curriculum (GPS-STEM.com)

Thumbnail of the How GPS Works poster Classroom Poster

Teachers, order a free copy of the "How GPS Works" poster for your classroom today. Or download and print it yourself.

Learn more

NSTA logo On Nov 30-Dec 2, we'll give away hundreds of GPS posters at the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) regional conference in New Orleans. Look for the NOAA Education booth (#110) in the exhibit hall.

Materials from NOAA Education

The following links lead to GPS-related lesson plans prepared for high school teachers by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

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Materials from GPS Adventures

GPS Adventures logo

The creators of the GPS Adventures exhibit prepared "A Guide for Teachers and Students" featuring activities suitable for grades K-8.

Materials from the Smithsonian

Time and Navigation: The Untold Story of Getting from Here to There

The Smithsonian Institution's Time and Navigation exhibit includes online teaching resources and rich multimedia related to GPS.

If you're planning a class trip to Washington, D.C., be sure to visit the exhibit at the National Air and Space Museum!

Web Tutorials

These links lead to GPS education pages at other government websites.

Multimedia

Rocket launch