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Ideas for Virtual Field Trips

What if you could travel across the world without a plane ticket? Explore the depths of nature from your living room? Trek across the surface of a distant planet in the solar system? With the innovative applications of modern technology, you can!


Virtual field trips allow you to experience the world from the comfort of your own home. Resources across the web seem endless, and there are virtual activities to suit all ages and interests. With the free, unique experiences that accompany them, it is no surprise they have been shaped life during the pandemic and have been implemented in education, entertainment, and exploration purposes!


Education


Virtual field trips have become increasingly popular within the classroom, as they provide a rich learning experience without the hassle and barriers of a physical class outing. From zoos to museums and planetariums to nuclear reactors, students of all ages have explored course concepts through engaging real-world experiences. Especially during distance learning, these interactive activities grant a sense of connection, as classes venture through an expedition together despite being physically apart.


History, arts, STEM, you name it. Whatever the topic may be, the possibilities are endless. NASA has provided at-home games and activities for students from grades K-4 to promote STEM engagement. Zoos and safaris are great places to introduce elementary students to the world of nature. And for secondary students interested in coding and computer machinery, a 3D virtual tour of the National Museum of Computing is sure to captivate your interest!


PC Gallery in the National Museum of Computing (The National Museum of Computing).



Entertainment


Amidst months of lockdown and despairing days of self-isolation, COVID boredom has become inevitable. Luckily, there are no restrictions when it comes to virtual traveling! Spend an afternoon in quarantine wandering the rooms of the Louvre or immersing in the artwork of the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, Netherlands.


Virtual trips can also make enjoyable family bonding activities. Whether you may be mourning a canceled vacation, reminiscing on a beloved destination, or simply looking for a new adventure, what better way to spend quality family time than by taking on an epic virtual voyage? If you are looking for local attractions and sites, visit your city's website to see if there are resources offered. Use Google Maps to explore Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, or the White House in Washington, DC. If you seek a thrill, take a virtual ride on your favourite roller coasters at Walt Disney World or Canada's Wonderland. Lastly, if you are looking to catch up with your favourite animals, head to the zoo and aquarium live streams for endless adorable fun.


Dinosaur ride at Disney’s Animal Kingdom (Walt Disney World Resorts).


Exploration


Virtual trips create unlimited opportunities for exploration—of faraway nations, different eras in time, even beyond the Earth's atmosphere! Venture into Sơn Đoòng, the largest cave in the world located in Vietnam, courtesy of National Geographic. Take a walk through Yellowstone National Park via videos and interactive maps. Tour the exhibitions and galleries of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. You can even enter the microgravity environment aboard the International Space Station or roam Mars's surface alongside the Curiosity rover. Visit the landmarks you have studied in geography class, take a step into the past at a historical museum, and explore places you may never get to see in person (unless you are planning an expedition to Mars, that is!).


Sơn Đoòng Cave in Vietnam (National Geographic).


Virtual touring has become a useful tool in many areas, including real estate listings and businesses showcasing their workspace for promotional or hiring purposes. As well, with college and university campuses across Canada closed during the pandemic, virtual tours have allowed prospective students to explore campuses from their own homes. If you plan to attend a post-secondary institution in the upcoming school year, check the school website for information on the virtual tour options they may offer!


With virtual field trips, you can embark on worldly experiences. No passport needed, no travel time required, and most importantly, no risk of spreading COVID affiliated! With your destination in mind, wherever it may be, click on the link and buckle in; your virtual adventure awaits.


Article Author: Victoria Huang

Article Editor: Valerie Shirobokov, Edie Whittington

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