Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Virtual Field Trips with Google Connected Classrooms

Through the use of Google Hangouts, we have the ability to visit anywhere in the world that we can get a person and an internet connected camera.

An initiative from Google called Google Connected Classrooms will allow you to participate in field trips from all over. This service is new, so the offerings may be limited in your area, but it's worth looking around for something that might augment your curriculum. At the end of this email you will find additional links that will show you some of what you might expect from this service.

Where we see the power of hangouts really having an impact in our classrooms is through local businesses and our own personal/professional contacts.

We see events like...
  • Multiple classes visiting a restaurant kitchen, interacting with a head chef
  • Walking a classroom through a factory while asking questions
  • Visiting the zoo with a guide
  • Interacting with the curator of a museum
  • connecting to other classrooms across the district/country
  • and so many more...
Imagine now being able to share experiences with your classes that required funding and time that were unavailable in the past. Not to mention the logistics of transportation and lunches. Now you can use your class time the way you want with more freedom than ever. Ever taken a 15 minute field trip? Well, now you can.

The setup is easy. The technology is already here. We simply need to foster the how and the why. This is where you come in. With your creative minds and my willingness to support your vision, we could begin creating some very exciting possibilities for our students.

Let us know how we can help you open the world to your students!

As for Google Connected Classrooms, the links below will provide you with an idea of what teachers and students might experience through using Google Hangouts in their classrooms.