Technology today provides a way to bring geographic locations and spectacular sites right to us. We can travel virtually from almost anywhere. With virtual field trips, we can travel to places in the world that we might never be able to experience in person, but we can get as close to real-life as possible with virtual travel.
As a social studies specialist, when schools moved to online learning, I started creating virtual field trips. With school events canceled and field trips out of the question, we had to get even more creative to keep learning engaging and meaningful online. Virtual field trips quickly became an avenue to spark curiosity and bring learning alive.
But virtual field trips are not just for students--they're for adults as well.
Build Community and Foster Engagement
I've carefully crafted a series of virtual field trips tailored for older adults. These virtual field trips can be added to an activity schedule to build community and foster social engagement with "Virtual Field Trip Fridays." Or they can be provided as an independent learning experience for therapeutic recreation or promoting intellectual wellness.
Structured, Simple, and Easy to Begin
All of the trips are simple and streamlined to minimize tech issues and maximize the virtual experience. The trips are self-paced. Simply open the Google Slides file and begin. Each trip includes reading sections to build background knowledge, maps, short video links, and Google Earth™ exploration. All of the links are incorporated into the trips to keep things structured and easy to navigate.
Versatile to Fit Many Different Needs
As a teacher, I recognize that there is no one size fits all, so that's why these trips are versatile. Since every trip is self-paced, spend as much or as little time on each section of the trip. These trips can be conducted as a whole group activity with a "tour guide" serving as the navigator and projecting the trip over a large screen. Depending on a person's tech-savviness or access to technology, participants can follow along with or without their own devices. Or the trips can be completed independently. And all of the virtual field trips can be accessed on a computer, a tablet, or even a smartphone.
Get the Conversation Going
Virtual field trips are much more than a webcam. Each trip is structured with discussion questions strategically placed throughout the trip. Questions ask participants to focus on what they observe or notice as they tour different sites. The discussion prompts may ask participants to consider what they learned and how it might support or challenge their prior knowledge. As well, questions may ask participants to acknowledge the feelings that are sparked within as they toured the different locations.
Create an Immersive Experience
Each of the virtual field trips includes a printable passport with a stamp tailored for each location. Collect a new stamp with each trip! A printable map with quick facts is also included. All of the trips include a word find with key terms participants encounter during the trip. Don't worry, there's an answer key included too. These printable components are great extension activities and create a more personalized experience.
All of the virtual field trips include a Google Slides version, as well as a PDF version to use with a screen reader. The trips include dyslexia-friendly font, and videos have closed captioning. Tech support is included.
Get Ready to Travel!
If you're ready to travel the world virtually, check out the ready-to-go virtual field trip collection, monthly bundles that are tailored for holidays and celebrations, and the year-long bundle to mix and match and have everything all in one place.
Each purchase includes a single license that is intended for use with one residency, community, and/or client group. If you wish to share this across multiple residencies or with your colleagues, please purchase additional license(s).