Green Friday: A Global Tour of Environmental Artists With Google Earth

greenfridayEnvironmental art often causes us to stop, think and question. It can make the viewer connect to the past, question the present or inspire change for the future.

So when Craig Roland posed the question on Art Education 2.0, “How might we use art or design to promote a healthy environment and a peaceful, sustainable world?” the work of environmental artists came to our mind.

In response to Craig’s question, we at The Teaching Palette created a Google Earth application that highlights environmental art on every continent. The art and artists featured were chosen based on environmental impact at various locations around the world.

The Environmental Art Around Google Earth application is not a direct answer to the question; instead it is a compilation of many answers as a global tour of environmental artists with Google Earth.

So explore art and artists from around the world as they show you how to use art/design to promote a healthy environment and a peaceful, sustainable world.

Below is a video to help introduce you to the Environmental Artists Around Google Earth application and explains how to use it.

(Have trouble viewing this video? Try this link. If your school blocks YouTube try this iweb link.)

If you do not have Google Earth on your computer or need to upgrade to the newest version of Google Earth, click here.

**Download the Environmental Art Google Earth file as illustrated in video above.

Now that you’ve explored the environmental artist globe on Google Earth how can you utilize it in your classroom?

  • Use Google Earth to introduce a specific artist, environmental art movement or culture.
  • Use as an extension for early finishers to introduce them to artists from around the world.
  • Introduce a specific artist such as Andy Goldsworthy. Give a group of students a digital camera, have them collect a variety of natural objects, arrange them in an interesting composition and then photograph their Goldsworthy-inspired art.
  • Print images and have students write about their experience.

Explore the blogs participating in “Green Friday” by clicking on the links below.

Hillary Andrlik + Theresa McGee

The founders and primary authors of this blog are Hillary Andrlik and Theresa McGee, who both teach elementary art in the Chicagoland area. Hillary has been teaching art since 2002, received her art education degree from Illinois State University and masters from National Louis University. Theresa has been teaching since 1997 and received her bachelors degree from Northern Illinois University and masters from Benedictine University. In 2008, Theresa became a National Board Certified Teacher. Both Hillary and Theresa have earned the honor of being Illinois Elementary Art Educator of the Year. Together, Hillary and Theresa have presented at Illinois Art Education Association Conference on topics ranging from classroom management to technology and each have presented on numerous other occasions for other organizations.


  • April 2, 2009


    Great activity! May I link it to my wiki (

  • April 2, 2009

    Chan Bliss

    What a great way to use google earth. I’m going to throw it up on my SmartBoard tomorrow. The kids will love it. Like taking a field trip and never leaving the room.

  • April 3, 2009


    How cool! What an interesting response to this assignment. I’m looking forward to exploring the world through the lens of your project later.

  • April 3, 2009


    I haven’t used this expression in quite a while, but it seems appropriate here–FAR OUT!

  • […] The Teaching Palette w/Theresa McGee + Hillary Andrlik […]

  • July 31, 2009


    This is amazing. I can’t wait to use this in my classroom and share it with other teachers. Thank you!

  • December 9, 2010


    I can’t wait to see what the green world is coming up with next.. It’s exciting to see all the progress that is being made to keep our world beautiful. I’ve taken my own steps in recycling and my neighbors are doing the same.. but ultimately I think there will need to be more incentive in order for people to jump on board and recycle.
    Stock Pots

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