Photo Credit: Clyde Robinson(CC 2.0)
The best classroom field trips are always headed by Ms. Frizzle, the eccentric teacher on the children’s series The Magic School Bus. Her lessons are brought to life with a trip in the Magic School Bus where students are swept away to exotic locations and enveloped in authentic learning experiences. Unfortunately, traveling inside the human body, back in time, or to the depths of the ocean are trips only reserved for Ms. Frizzle, her students, and their Magical bus.
Or are they?
The Magic School bus has materialized in classrooms nationwide. With the use of web based tools, teachers are now able to bring the world to their students. From the Taj Mahal to the bottom of the Grand Canyon, virtual field trips and tours can easily be implemented in the classroom and will help students visualize and better understand the world around them.
Google Maps and Google Street view- Students can travel worldwide with endless resources from Google Maps. Mike Reading, a Google Apps for Education specialist provides the ideal launching point for using Google Maps.
- World Wonders Project – Exploring the wonders of the modern and ancient world.
- Art Project – Presenting the world’s art work.
Eternal Egypt– Eternal Egypt tells a multimedia story of Egypt’s history, people, and places. Take your students on a guided tour or immerse them in many other types virtual environments.
Panoramas of the World– View high definition panoramas of the world. Students can view natural landscapes, historic cities,and landmarks. This site boasts the largest collection of panoramic images.
NASA’s Virtual Field Trip– The Virtual Field Trip is an immersive multimedia application developed to support student and user exploration of areas on Earth that have been identified as analog sites to regions on Mars. Analog sites are those areas that share some common traits with sites on Mars and have been identified based on their significance and importance to NASA.
The Whitehouse– Along with your study of Government and Civics, students can tour the West Wing with “Inside the Whitehouse” , a fully immersive multimedia site.
Colonial Williamsburg– Colonial Williamsburg is truly one of the best electronic field trips available with EFT’s that cover many aspects of U.S. history. These Emmy Award winning, live broadcasts are suitable for grades 4-8.
cilc– The Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration is an extensive database of live interactive content and professional development.