Virtual Field Trips: An Innovation
People say that real education is not attained inside the four walls of the classroom, that it is in the outside world where children learn the most important things; that it is not inside the school where they would get to understand the real meaning of life. There are lessons, particularly subjects on History or Art, where going outside the school premises is a necessity. This is why teachers and educators have thought of ways in bringing classes outside of school buildings. This alternative learning experience is more commonly referred to as field trips.
Field trips can be a lot of different things. It could mean going to a specific historical spot: to the famous Eiffel Tower maybe? Or it can simply be visiting the museum to see paintings of well-known artists like Vincent Van Gogh's Starry Night or Leonardo Da Vinci's Mona Lisa - may they be only replicas or the real ones. Some out-of-school activities or field trips may include watching musicals or plays. It really depends on the subject. What is important is that the people who join get educated and be able to learn something relevant.
Moreover, the really short attention span of people nowadays, particularly adolescents and kids, easily becomes a problem in class not just to the teachers but to the other students as well. Distraction is inevitable especially when talking about the young ones. To be able to teach them well, one should prepare a really interesting lesson plan, and think of activities which will not only break the ice, but will also be something meaningful and relevant for knowledge. Field trips offer a kind of help for this dilemma too, when it allows the students to visit factories - maybe pencil or soda factories - where they can witness how a product is actually done. They will definitely find this kind of stuff interesting since pencils and sodas are things seen in everyday life, and are not too technical. But this depends too, on the age range of the students because different age groups have varying interests.
However, field trips become a very limited option when already talking about resources. Of course, money is a requirement. There are entrance fees, transportation, insurance for those who will join, and a lot of other expenses to pay; it is not every time that parents or students are willing to invest on this kind of events. More often than not, too, field trips are meant for faraway destinations. But when talking about places from the other side of the world, maybe a field trip is not really a practical option. Fortunately, modernization has made its way to resolve this dilemma. A solution presents itself in the form of virtual field trips.
Technology first brought people into libraries all over the world while sitting in front of their computers through converting books to web pages. Now, it is bringing people to all the significant places on earth while enjoying every convenience of staying in one's home. There are no transportation, entrance fees, insurance or board and lodging expenses to pay; no traffic, or danger of traveling through air or water to think about. All one would need is a computer and an internet connection stable enough for a smooth departure, enjoyable stay and safe arrival. The list of advantages is just never ending. Indeed, an important innovation.
A virtual field trip, basically, is a journey of the world found through a number of sites in the internet. There are web pages specifically designed and organized to feature images and other media, complete with captions and important details about a certain place. Its primary aim is to present, inform, entertain and bring a person to a place in the world, alongside providing the learning experience which he or she can consider as a an equally memorable real life visit. Different sites in the internet offer a wide range of countries, museums, islands, and specific destinations to choose from.
Children nowadays are lucky enough to enjoy what technology can offer. Knowledge is made more powerful and easy to attain because of innovative developments like virtual field trips.