It would be amazing to take students to experience first-hand every place or topic discussed in the classroom. Studying pandas? Take a trip to China! Studying renewable energy? It is time to check out the solar panels in the Mojave Desert. While students can take advantage of experience-based learning in their communities, and hopefully they do several times a year, it is impossible to visit every place that students learn about. However, the Nature Conservancy is bringing the natural wonders throughout the world closer for students to explore virtually.
At their website, www.natureworkseverywhere.org/events/, the Nature Conservancy provides virtual field trips to coastal Peru, the coral reefs of Palau, the deserts and grasslands of Africa, and more. If your students are studying rainforests, an upcoming virtual field trip to Borneo will take place on November 16th. Expert scientists will discuss how they are using cutting-edge techniques to understand the health of the rainforest.
By registering for upcoming virtual field trips, teachers receive a link to the event and students are given the opportunity to send in questions for the host to ask the scientist. Not only can students interact with a scientist and virtually explore the different biomes of the world, but the Nature Conservancy offers students handouts to provide background and extend learning. They include vocabulary sheets, discussion questions, a virtual field trip log, and other related resources. If you can’t make the new virtual field trip events that the Nature Conservancy hosts, your classroom can access previous recordings of events at the same website any time of year. There are currently seven archived events on the website for your class to engage with and explore. Check them out!