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Ministry of Education.
Kaua e rangiruatia te hāpai o te hoe; e kore tō tātou waka e ū ki uta

"The Global Positioning System", Connected, Level 4 – Seeing Beyond, November 2019

14 November 2019

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This article explains the Global Positioning System – a technology that we’ve quickly become dependent on. It explains how it works and its benefits, while also prompting students to think critically about the risks of over-reliance.

Other useful resources

GPS improvement: Funding will allow pinpoint accuracy: The New Zealand Government announced it will fund more advanced satellite technology, which will make GPS accurate to within one metre, down from the current 10 metres.

Discussion questions

These could be class discussions with teacher guidance.

  • Explore the different fields that GPS technology is used in such as farming, recreation, and security. How has the introduction of GPS technology to these fields changed people’s sensory perception?
  • Discuss the short and long term impacts of the introduction and recent improvements in GPS to these fields.
  • Select one of these fields and identify the creative and critical thinking that would be required to develop a GPS outcome.
  • What knowledge and skills from technology and other disciplines would be needed to develop this GPS outcome?
  • Where do you think that this technology is likely to go next?

Indicators of progression for discussion starters

Component Indicator Level
Characteristics of technology
  • identify examples where technology has changed people’s sensory perception and/or physical abilities and discuss the potential short and long term impacts of these
  • identify examples of creative and critical thinking in technological practice
  • identify and categorise knowledge and skills from technology and other disciplines that have informed decisions in technological development and manufacture.

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