Monday, June 1, 2015

Technology in the Classroom: Expeditions by Google

I am pretty sure most teachers out there would agree that field trips provide terrific learning experiences for our students! Sometimes though there are places we wish we could take our students but it would involve a plane ride and a lot of money. 

However, did you know there was a teacher in Canada that took her students on field trip to the Galapagos Islands and another teacher from Chicago that took her class on a trip to the Great Wall of China. 


How you ask?

Expeditions by Google

Expeditions allow teachers to take their students where buses can't go! Think of it as your own "Magic School Bus"! Basically you would get to be a new and improved Mrs. Frizzle and take your students on the field trip of their life! I know that my kids would love this and I want to get my hands on a set of these!

Google's website explains how it works...
"From the Expeditions app on their tablet, a teacher is able to send synchronized three-dimensional 360° panoramas to each student’s Cardboard viewer, pointing out areas of interest in real time and instantly pausing the trip when needed." 
Google Cardboard
Expeditions will soon offer virtual field trips to some of the world's top museums, monuments, galleries, and natural world wonders. Expeditions is set to be released this Fall so click HERE to submit your name on an interest form to Google to see if you could get a kit to pilot in your classroom! 

If I could use these in my classroom, I would love to take my students to a Monarch Sanctuary in Mexico! During the school year we learn about Monarch butterflies and their migration from Canada through the United States on their way to Mexico. The Monarchs spend the winter on Oyamel Fir trees in Mexico. There are so many Monarchs there that they cover the trees in blankets of orange! Being able to take my students there on a virtual field trip would be the best way to conclude our journey on following the butterflies. We could incorporate math by estimating the number butterflies on our virtual trip. We could also integrate social studies by learning about the history of Mexico. Of course we would incorporate science too, as we learn about the butterflies habitat! 

I would love to hear where you would like to take your students using Expeditions, so leave a comment below!

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