When Thomas travels, we use Google Earth to show Hannah where he's going to be and where that is in relation to California. So far it has helped her with some basic geography--not only the names of the states, but their general location in the U.S.-- and has also been a great help for what she considers to be the most important part of every trip: "Daddy, did you bring me a snow globe? Um, I mean, how was your trip to XYZ? Did you bring me a snow globe?"
Who knew there could be a downside to such a wonderfully useful tool?
After school one day not long ago, Hannah decided to tell me all about the planets.
"Mommy, the sun is a ball of gases."
I, the ridiculously unimaginative parent who thought it wonderful that she knew where Virginia and Seattle were, gasped in delight "That's right! Where did you learn that?!"
"At school, mom. My teacher told me."
"That's great! What else did you learn?"
"About the planets. Saturn is big with rings. And Mars is hot. And the moon, and, um, Pluto, and Venus, and I can't remember what else. Oh, and we live on Google Earth."
So far, no amount of explaining can shake her faith that we live on Google Earth. And as an original Google fan and one-woman, East Coast marketing team, I have to say that she might not be all wrong. A little premature, perhaps. But wrong? Only when she gets old enough to have to answer that question for credit.