These two sites might be good places for locating some interesting virtual field trips for social studies students:
One of our Thinkfinity partners--the Smithsonian National Museum of American History--offers two electronic field trips appropriate for grades 4-8:
Maybe some of these web sites will get you started on your library of virtual field trips.
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Lynne, thanks for recommending the America on the Move and Separate is Not Equal: Brown v. Board resources from NMAH. Katrina, if you decide to use them, please let us know what you think, and feel free to be in touch with questions about additional resources from these exhibitions or using these materials in the classroom!
National Museum of American History
A question...Our program works with a transition population ages 18-21 -- at a variety of grade levels. Many of the resources mentioned will work well for a number of students in our group. However, we also have a cluster of college-bound students in the mix. Can you suggest any virtual field trip sites designed for high school students and beyond as well?
Hm. Can you tell me more about what you mean by "virtual field trips"? Do you mean something like the image-rich, terrifically illustrated, 360 degree views in the New York Botanical Garden's Plant Hunters? Or did you mean something else?
And on video conferencing, have you found any obstacles to using Skype? The sound quality is terrific, the video works really nicely, and I've found that the connection is pretty stable. I'd love to hear other options if people have them!
I just found a great web site for historial virtual field trips. HistoryBuff.com Panoramas of Historic Sites in America The site offers a set of 25 narrated panoramic tours of significant historic sites including the following:
Hope you enjoy these tours!
I'm a big fan of the CILC (Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration.) www.cilc.org The staff is fabulous and will help you find just what you need. When I first began introducing video conferencing and virtual field trips to teachers, CILC helped set me up with a content provider at no charge to give participants a taste of the technology. Once you join their site, you can post and review requests for collaborations with other classrooms around the country. Have fun!
Thanks for sharing the information about the CILC. I looked at their website, and as you stated, a teacher can join for free. I thought it might be useful for teachers to learn all the services offered by the CILC at no charge so I have copied the following list from their website:
You have shared a wonderful resource for teachers to use for video conferencing and virtual field trips.
If you are looking for some great electronic field trips, I recommend that you consider participating in this season's historical, electronic field trips offered by Colonial Williamsburg for students in grades 4-8.
eSchool News is featuring these field trips in an article, "Colonial Williamsburg introduces new electronic field trips," published in the October 24, 2012, online newspaper.
However, the Colonial Williamsburg electronic field trips are not free as the article states. You can pay for each field trip individually or buy the entire season for one group price.
Hi Lynne Hoffman,
Thanks for sharing such an interesting article! I found some videos for Grades K-8 on both the National Geographic Education (See Media - National Geographic Education) and the Smithsonian's HISTORY EXPLORER (Smithsonian's History Explorer Interactives & Media).
The June 2013 edition of eSchool News features the 10 best virtual field trips--see http://www.eschoolnews.com/2013/06/01/eschool-news-june-2013/