Take a virtual field trip!
Here are 5 great ones…and a link to 5 more!
Free to the entire K-12 community, this programming uses the allure of Arctic dogsled expeditions and Arctic research as the vehicle through which K-12 teachers and students gain an understanding of natural and social sciences while they experience the cultures of the Arctic. Since 2000, these adventurous learning expeditions have circumnavigated the Arctic to observe, experience, and document traditional ecological knowledge and collect previously unknown in-situ environmental realities–while collaborating with K-12 students and teachers in state-of-the-art online learning environments. Standard-aligned curricula are also available.
2. Global Trek
This adventure from Scholastic looks like Expedia or Travelocity, but is created for students eager to explore the world … from their computer. Student can choose from a list of countries and will be asked to keep a travel journal to write about different topics during their online trip.
Google Lit Trips are free, downloadable files that mark the journeys of characters from famous literature on the surface of Google Earth. At each location along the journey, there are placemarks with pop-up windows containing a variety of resources including relevant media, thought-provoking discussion starters, and links to supplementary information about “real world” references made in that particular portion of the story. According to their creator, Google Lit Trips “three-dimensionalize the reading experience by placing readers ‘inside the story’ traveling alongside the characters; looking through the windshield of that old jalopy in The Grapes of Wrath or waddling alongside Mr. and Mrs. Mallard’s duckling family in Make Way for Ducklings.”
Sometimes students just want to explore something cool, like chocolate. Thanks to step-by-step videos on its chocolate-making process, Hershey’s gives students a fun virtual field trip … even if it’s minus the smell and taste of chocolate!
5. Le Louvre
Take a virtual tour of the Louvre to experience a 360-degree panoramic view of many of the museum’s halls. The virtual tour web page offers different departments and architectural views of the museum. Tours currently include Egyptian Antiquities, Remains of the Louvre’s Moat, and Galerie d’Apollon, as well as many other rooms included in the museum (some are even closed to the public!).