3. 360° Cities
Do you want to try diving with tiger sharks? Or maybe parachute jump from 10,000 meters? 360° Cities provides the largest collection of amazing, high-resolution panoramic images of locations all over the world. Some images have sound as well so that the viewer is truly immersed in the experience. Images can be used in VR lessons or on any device!
Nearpod VR allows educators to take their classes on virtual field trips around the world on any device. Nearpod VR works on VR headsets but you don’t need to use them to experience a virtual field trip. With over 450 destinations to choose from you can take your kids to so many incredible places! You can also search by subject area so that you can be sure it fits with your class or curriculum.
Field Trip Zoom has an extensive calendar of interactive events that can be live streamed into your classroom. Although Field Trip Zoom is not free they do offer a one month free trial for new schools or school districts.
Google Tour Builder is an exciting way to create your own tour to share a journey and highlight locations along the way using Google Earth. Tour Builder brings together the best of MyMaps and Street View. With Tour Builder, you can take viewers from location to location in first-person 3D glory. Choose the locations, choose how you want them to be seen and add any additional information. Students can view tours that have already been created or create one of their own!
Empatico.org is a free resource that connects classrooms through video. Empatico empowers teachers and students to explore the world through experiences that spark curiosity, kindness, and empathy. Aimed at upper elementary school students, Empatico.org is a way for students and teachers to connect to other classes while focusing on sparking curiosity, kindness, and empathy.
Take self-guided, room-by-room tours of exhibits from your device. You can walk through the museum and move from room to room through the map. It’s an exciting and fun way to explore one of the most famous museums in the world. Visitors can visit permanent exhibits, current exhibits, past exhibits, take a narrated tour and more!
Once you’ve seen your school from the curb on Google Maps Street View, take it to the next level with Street View Treks. These custom-produced exploration experiences are awesome for students. They provide information about the location and videos that pair nicely with the panoramic views. Locations include Nepal, Gombe National Park, the Pyramids of Giza, the Great Barrier Reef (a Street View Trek underwater!) and more.
An extension to Street View and Treks is to let students take you on a walking tour of someplace in the world. They do some research and collect some facts about the location first. Then they load up the location using Street View or Treks. They start recording a screencast video (a video of what’s happening on their screen with their microphone recording their voices). Some free screencasting tools: Screencastify (my favorite), Screencast-O-Matic and Flipgrid (there are others). Students narrate the tour as they “walk” the streets using Street View or Treks.
These virtual tours don’t have to be confined to what you can see from the street. Google Cultural Institute gives you access to top-notch art collections from around the world (Art Project) and modern/ancient world heritage sites (World Wonders). Witness significant moments in history with Historic Moments, giving students a version of a field trip to the past.
15. Mapping fun
Creating or viewing an interactive map with images and information can be the next-best thing to visiting a location, and students can create their own. With Google MyMaps you can take your kids on an educational road trip right from your classroom. In this post by Craig Klement he shows you how to take a road trip with Google MyMaps!
This game is like a surprise virtual field trip every time you play. Geoguessr uses Google Maps Street View and places participants in a random location somewhere in the world. By panning around, zooming or “walking” down the street, participants place a pin on a map to guess where they are. The closer they guess, the more points they win. It’s great for critical thinking and using context clues.
17. Smarty Pins
Smarty Pins is like Geoguessr’s cousin. Granted, it’s a little less like a virtual field trip, but it does use geography-based questions to play. Participants answer questions by dropping a pin where they think the answer is. It’s fun, it’s academic, and it is geography-focused … enough to constitute a virtual field trip experience? I’ll let you decide. 🙂
Part of Google Arts and Culture, The Hidden Worlds of National Parks take participants on a journey through some of the worlds most amazing places. See the Kenai Fjords, Hawaii Volcanoes, Carlsbad Caverns, Bryce Canyon and the Dry Tortugas.
Take a trip step inside 11 dramatic virtual tours some of the most beautiful theaters, concert halls and opera houses in the world. Carnegie Hall, The Colosseum in Rome, and The Sydney Opera House are just a few of the amazing trips you take!
Discovery Education produces some really solid, well produced virtual field trips. They’re live and incorporate images, live video and pre-produced video. The hosts answer questions on the spot during the live broadcast from students who are watching. Past virtual field trips are viewable on video (see video to right from Ford’s Theatre). Each field trip includes classroom resources and activities that teachers can use instantly. Find them on Discovery Education’s events page by selecting “Live/Virtual Field Trip” in the drop-down filter menu.