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40 Amazing Educational Virtual Field Trips

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Amazing Educational Virtual Field Trips

Virtual field trips are a game changer. Not only do they fill in for real field trips when budgets and other roadblocks prevent in-person options, but virtual field trips also open doors to educational experiences all over the country and the world, both past and present. No fundraising or permission slips required!

(Note: For anyone who needs it, YouTube offers a closed-captioning option. Just click the CC button in the bottom right-hand corner.)

1. Amazon Career Tours

Amazon career tours

Amazon Career Tours are free virtual field trips that inspire students to pursue careers of the future. Tour whenever, wherever on Kahoot! Each tour comes with a Teacher Toolkit that includes a facilitation guide and student worksheets.

  • Amazon Fulfillment Center Tour : Explore how packages get delivered at lightning speed and how computer science, engineering, and real people work together to make the magic happen. 
  • (New!) Data Center Tour 1: Uncovering Cloud Computing : Do students know what “the cloud” actually is? Find out how we went from renting movies at the store to streaming them from anywhere at any time.
  • (New!) Data Center Tour 2: Keeping Data Safe and Sustainable : Discover the infrastructure that keeps your information safe and sustainable while diving into data careers of the future.
  • Space Innovation Tour : Students will learn about the amazing technology on board the Orion spacecraft in NASA’s Artemis I flight test and hear from the engineers who made it all possible. 

There are so many amazing online options when it comes to zoos that we couldn’t narrow it down to just one. Most zoos have live webcams in some of their most popular exhibits, such as the KC Zoo Polar Bear Cam and the Giant Panda Cam at Smithsonian’s National Zoo . However, some zoos offer a more in-depth look. You’ll definitely want to check out the San Diego Zoo as their site for kids includes behind-the-scenes videos and stories, as well as a variety of printable activities and online games. Check out our full list of virtual zoo goodness.

3. The Aquarium

It’s a similar story with aquariums. You have your pick of live webcams, but our favorites are the Georgia Aquarium’s Ocean Voyager webcam (wait for the whale shark!) and the “Jelly Cam” at Monterey Bay Aquarium (so soothing). The Seattle Aquarium even has a 30-minute video tour . Want more under-the-sea fun? Here’s our ultimate list of virtual aquarium field trips.

4. The Farm

The classic preschool field trip goes online! You can have your pick of dairy farm field trips, but we like this one from the Dairy Alliance  and this one from Stonyfield Organic . Farm Food 360 gives students the opportunity to immerse themselves in Canadian farm and food tours—from raising pigs to making milk and cheese. We’re also loving these virtual egg farm field trips from the American Egg Board.

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5. An Art Museum

Metropolitan Museum of Art's #MetKids

We found 20 art museums with virtual tours , including the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s # MetKids and its awesome Where’s Waldo? setup. And you can’t miss the world-famous Louvre in Paris (no passport needed!). Check out the current virtual tours: Traveling Materials and Objects, the Advent of the Artist, the Body in Movement, and Founding Myths: From Hercules to Darth Vader!

6. A National Park

From webcams at Hawaii volcanoes to a virtual run along the rim of the Grand Canyon , you have tons of options here. Our top pick would have to be Yellowstone. The interactive maps are a great way to see the Mammoth Hot Springs and Mud Volcano, but we think kids will be psyched about the Old Faithful Geyser livestream and the opportunity to make their own predictions for its next eruption . Check out everything the National Park Service has to offer virtually.

7. A Planetarium

Through Stellarium Web , kids can explore over 60,000 stars, locate planets, and watch sunrises and solar eclipses. If you enter your location, you can see all the constellations that are visible in the night sky in your corner of the world.

8. A Recycling Center

Take your students on a virtual field trip of a recycling center and a modern landfill . Plus, there’s a full-on curriculum that includes lesson plans, take-home handouts, and more.

9. Slime in Space

Nickelodeon teamed up with two astronauts on the International Space Station to demonstrate how slime reacts to microgravity and had kids reproduce those same demonstrations back here on Earth. It makes for an amazing 15-minute virtual field trip .

10. Nature Lab

The Nature Conservancy has a brand-new virtual field trip entitled “You’re the Scientist! Citizen Science, Frogs & Cicadas.” Check out their full library of videos on topics like climate change and water security.

11. Discovery Education

Discovery Education hosts a variety of virtual events —each with a companion guide with hands-on learning activities. Current offerings include “Making a New Life: The Courage of a Refugee” and “The Future Is Now” (architectural and engineering innovations). Stay tuned for their upcoming civics virtual field trip, “The American Ideal.”

12. The Great Lakes

This virtual field trip from Great Lakes Now has three components: coastal wetlands, algae, and lake sturgeon. Each video is a quick five minutes long.

13. The Strong National Museum of Play

Explore online exhibits and discover the history and evolution of play. Check out board games that changed play, sports video games that shaped digital play, and the making of Monopoly to name a few.

14. U.S. Census Bureau

Kids can learn about the most recent Census and how census data is collected and used. This virtual field trip also features interviews with subject matter experts and an interactive challenge.

15. National Constitution Center

The “Museum of We the People,” the Constitution Center serves as a “headquarters for civic education.” Check out the Interactive Constitution section , and be sure to watch the virtual tour .

16. The Johnson Space Center

Houston, we have a virtual field trip. Three, actually. All with companion educator guides. The star of the show is the behind-the-scenes tour of the Johnson Space Center .

17. Birthplace of Music

Boise State put together this fully interactive virtual field trip with text, photos, audio, and video about the history of music. The four featured music locations are: Vienna, Austria; New Orleans, Louisiana; Cleveland, Ohio; and Bristol, Tennessee-Virginia.

18. Colonial Williamsburg

This living-history museum provides a look into life in an early American community. The website offers five different webcams featuring areas such as the tavern and the armory.

19. Mount Vernon

This virtual experience of George Washington’s home is incredibly well done. Enter the different buildings—from the opulent mansion to the chilling slave quarters—and click on different items for video and text explanations.

20. Mount Rushmore

This virtual tour comes with a real tour guide! Blaine Kortemeyer is the Assistant Chief of Interpretation and Education, who lends his expertise on the building of this national monument. The 3D Explorer is also an excellent tool.

21. The Manhattan Project

Take a visit to the National WWII Museum for “a cross-country virtual expedition to discover the science, sites, and stories of the creation of the atomic bomb.” Don’t forget to download the classroom guide!

22. The White House

For a look inside the iconic building, check out the 360° tour of some of the most historic rooms of the People’s House, from the Situation Room to the Oval Office. Examine each room and check out the contents up close.

23. The Smithsonian

The National Museum of Natural History’s virtual experiences are self-guided, room-by-room tours of permanent, current, and past exhibits. Be sure to send kids to the second floor Bone Hall so they can take a look at all different kinds of skeletons.

24. Google Arts & Culture

A collaboration with over 1,200 leading museums and archives, Google Arts & Culture is an incredible storehouse of monumental works of art. We recommend the Street View and Play sections.

25. 360 Cities

Boasting the world’s largest collection of 360° image videos, 360 Cities provides kids with the opportunity to see stunning panoramas across the globe, including their video of the ice floe on the Vistula River in Poland.

26. Buckingham Palace

It’s the official residence of the Queen of England, and boy, is it opulent! Get a peek inside the gorgeous Grand Staircase, White Drawing Room, Throne Room, and Blue Drawing Room.

27. The Great Wall of China

See one of the wonders of the world with this amazing, thousands-year-old fortification system known the world over. This virtual tour has four scenes available (you have to pay to get access to all 14). The bird’s-eye view of Mutianyu pass is a highlight.

28. Easter Island

Easter Island Moai Statues at Rano Raraku under sunny summer sky. Rano Raraku, Rapa Nui National Park, Hanga Roa, Easter Island, Chile.

Most of us recognize the giant stone statues of Easter Island, but what’s the story behind them? Nova’s online adventure “Secrets of Easter Island” delves into the mystery with a virtual tour.

29. Son Doong Cave

National Geographic lets you explore the world’s largest cave, located in Vietnam. Use the interactive map to enjoy the fully immersive experience (sound on!).

30. Ancient Egypt

You don’t need a time machine! Discovering Ancient Egypt has a ton of free resources, but it’s the interactive pyramid map and 3D temple reconstructions that really give it a field trip feel.

31. Back Through Time

Virtually visit Turn Back the Clock , a museum exhibit that ran for two years at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago. Through compelling personal stories, innovative interactive media, and pop culture artifacts, the exhibit takes guests through seven decades of history—from the dawn of the nuclear age to significant policy questions our leaders face today.

Landscape on planet Mars, scenic desert scene on the red planet

No, really! You can absolutely “go” to the red planet. With Access Mars , you can see the actual surface of Mars, recorded by NASA’s Curiosity rover. Trust us—don’t skip the intro. And if your kids liked that, check out this 4K tour of the moon . These may go down in history as some of the best virtual field trips your students get to experience.

33. The Battleship New Jersey

Take a virtual tour of this historical battleship located on the Camden waterfront. This battleship has traveled more miles than any other!

34. The Vatican

No need to travel to Rome! Take in the amazing art and architecture located in the Vatican Museums with these 360-degree views.

35. Space Center Houston

Space Center Houston Virtual Tour

Download the app and climb aboard the virtual tram line! Take a virtual walk through the Space Center Houston with informational stops along the way.

36. The Louvre

Virtually visit museum rooms in the famous Louvre located in Paris. Even check out The Louvre kids’ site for student-friendly galleries and stories. You can’t visit The Louvre without seeing the Mona Lisa , so check out their immersive Mona Lisa experience available in the app store.

37. Ellis Island

Map of Ellis Island Virtual Field Trip

This interactive tour of Ellis Island lets students explore places like the Baggage Room and the Stairs of Separation through short stories, historical photographs, videos, and audio clips. Students can also hear the stories of real kids who recently immigrated to the United States, explore colorful charts and graphs with immigration data, and watch a 30-minute movie that includes a Q&A with National Park Service Rangers who explain what coming to America was like for many immigrants.

38. Plimoth Patuxet Museums

Desk with laptop featuring a Wampanoag Native American.

Travel back to the 17th century with options for free, on-demand, digital resources or a live, 1-hour virtual school program led by a Plimoth Patuxet Contemporary Indigenous Museum Educator. Students explore Wampanoag daily life and history; discover the real history of Thanksgiving and the legend behind it; meet a 17th-century Pilgrim; get an interactive sneak peak into 17th-century wardrobes; and learn about simple machines and water power at the Plimoth Grist Mill. There are also options for virtual hands-on history workshops, including Wampanoag Pottery and Write Like a Pilgrim.

39. Children’s Museum Houston

Children's Museum Houston museum educators giving a tour

When you can’t visit the museum in person, 3D virtual field trips to the Children’s Museum Houston are the next best thing. All videos are produced and curated by museum educators and feature hands-on activities that can be done in the classroom. Topics include nutrition, math, states of matter, forces and properties of water, and more.

40. Museum of the American Revolution

Beyond the Battlefield Virtual Field Trip featuring Laruen Tarshis, author of I Survived series

Beyond the Battle Field is a virtual field trip for grades 2-8 hosted by Lauren Tarshis, author of the I Survived historical-fiction series for kids. Students will meet a museum educator as well as the museum curator, and explore artifacts and documents from the American Revolution. Plus they’ll hear the stories of teens who served during the war. There’s also a Classroom Kit available with a vocabulary list and discussion questions by grade level.

If you liked this roundup of the best virtual field trips and want more resources like this, be sure to  subscribe to our newsletters.

Plus, check out the best field trip ideas for every age and interest (virtual options too) ..

You can't always get there in person, but lots of places will let you "visit" online. These are the best virtual field trips out there!

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6 Free Resources for Virtual Field Trips

Teachers can use panoramic photos and videos of locations all around the world to make lessons more engaging.

Teacher projects an image of the Louvre museum

How can you take students around the world without moving very far? If you haven’t yet, it’s worth trying virtual field trips and excursions. Now more than ever, these resources allow students to experience spaces they might not otherwise get to see, and there are many ways to introduce them to students as they explore a topic.

Virtual field trips can help students explore a new space, build vocabulary and background knowledge, and expand their world view. Whether you want to explore the setting of a novel, introduce a place-based math problem, or make connections to current events, virtual field trips can expand upon traditional lessons in many ways. One of the reasons I love them so much is that they allow students to view a space that piques their curiosity and provides context for their learning.

The term virtual field trip can be used to describe not just 360 degree photos and videos but also the live interactions and video conferences you might set up with a subject matter expert like an author or museum docent. Flipgrid (one of my favorite tools) hosts a handful of these types of virtual field trips .

6 Ways to Set Up Virtual Field Trips

The list of free virtual field trip resources here is adapted from my ISTE Live presentation in December 2020. Students can access these resources without logging into a new website—teachers can post the link to a 360 degree panoramic image or interactive experience in a platform students already use, making it easy for them to access in both traditional classroom settings and at home.

1. AirPano : This site includes 360 degree videos and images from around the world. You aren’t required to create an account—you can just jump in and start searching. When you’re ready to share with students, there is a link you can copy and paste or an embed option if you’re adding a widget to a site of resources. If you’re looking for international locations, AirPano is a great choice for exploring outdoor spaces, including Machu Picchu in the daytime, or the northern lights at night.

2. Google Maps Treks : In combination with Google Maps and Earth, Treks organizes content in an easy-to-navigate way. There are Treks for places around the globe, including the U.S. and Canada, Egypt, Nepal, and India. Each one has information and videos for students to explore.

3. National Geographic : National Geographic’s YouTube channel transports students all over the world to learn about different cultures, foods, animals, and more. Have students press play on the video, and as the video begins, they can use their cursor or trackpad to spin the video in different directions. They can tap on one part of the screen to move the video back and forth as they learn about a new place.

4. Nearpod : Known as an interactive presentation tool, Nearpod has virtual reality content built into its platform in the form of 360 degree panoramic views, which can be used as a great pre-reading strategy to introduce a new book or spark discussion about a social studies or science topic. To use these interactive experiences with your students, insert them into any Nearpod lesson in the same way you would add a slide or poll. (Please note: Nearpod also offers a paid plan with additional amenities.)

5. 360Cities : This collection of stock 360 degree images has lots of user-uploaded resources. There is a special school version that allows you to introduce students to more dynamic learning experiences; it has features such as a guided tour creator.

6. Google Arts and Culture :  This tool has a variety of high-quality content, including interactive views that let students walk through notable spaces such as museums and explore examples of beautiful architecture like the Alhambra in Spain. You can let students know that this resource is mobile-responsive in addition to working on a web browser—they can access the content on a smartphone or tablet, or their Chromebook or laptop.

Engaging Students With Guided Questions

Set a purpose for students as they explore these resources by using prompts to guide their excursions. Potential prompts include:

  • What do you think the weather is like in this place?
  • How do you think someone captured this moment?
  • What might be missing from this shot?

I’ve put together more prompts here .

If building student vocabulary is a primary goal of introducing virtual field trips to your students, you can point out different objects in the panoramic views or ask students to find certain features. For example, imagine students are learning about geological features and you take them on a virtual field trip to Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. Together you can discuss vocabulary like crater , steam vent , and igneous rocks .

When sharing with students, include a prompt or question and post the link and task into a space they already have access to, such as Google Classroom, Seesaw, or Schoology. If you’re sharing a list of resources for students, colleagues, or families that includes some of these virtual excursions, you might curate a list of favorites using a tool like Google Sites, Spark Page, or Microsoft Sway.

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The 22 Ultimate Virtual Field Trips & Tours for Students

Two students and a teacher explore virtual field trips on a tablet in the classroom.

Written by Maria Kampen

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What is a virtual tour and how does it work?

Technology powering virtual field trips for students, 22 best virtual field trips for students, how to incorporate virtual tours into learning activities.

Imagine taking your entire class to see one of the seven wonders of the world up close and personal — and then being back at school before the final bell rings. 

The rise of online learning activities during the pandemic accelerated the availability of virtual field trips , tours and experiences for students of all ages. Now there are many interactive virtual tours available to places that would be impossible to reach on a class trip — the pyramids in Egypt, the Louvre museum in Paris or even an African safari.

We put together a list of 22 unforgettable virtual field trips and experiences that will help your students see amazing sights, connect their learning to real-world experiences and expand their horizons.

Virtual tours allow students to explore noteworthy places around the world, from the comfort of their home or the classroom. 

Virtual tours give students the opportunity to stop, explore and guide learning at their own pace. While they’re exploring, they can get up close to nature or artifacts that might not otherwise be easily accessible. 

Virtual tours can be many different things, including:

  • A live webcam of a zoo or animal habitat
  • A 360 degree view of a location you can manipulate
  • Pictures enriched with helpful information and diagrams

Even ten or fifteen years ago, video tours would have been rare or impossible. Advancements in technology and education have combined to help people learn and explore from anywhere!

  • National Geographic creates TV series about nature, history and archaeology
  • Food shows like Netflix’s Salt Fat Acid Heat take viewers on food journeys across the world
  • Planet Earth , a television series, brings far-flung locations to your living room or classroom
  • Discovery Education gives educators access to multimedia resources that supplement classroom learning
  • Video conferencing technology like Zoom lets you connect with people and learning experiences around the world

We love being able to sit at home or in the classroom and learn about different foods, cultures and geography. Why not introduce that to your students?

1. Take a trip to the zoo

Two zebras in a zoo

Whether it’s live webcams of adorable pandas or behind-the-scenes tours with zookeepers, zoos all over the world offer ways for animal antics to delight and entertain your students. 

Some of our favorites include:

  • Edinburgh Zoo’s Panda Cam
  • Georgia Aquarium’s Beluga Whale Livestream
  • The Smithsonian National Zoo’s Naked Mole-rat Cam
  • A live feed of African river wildlife in Laikipia County, Kenya
  • The San Diego Zoo Live Ape Cam , or any of their other live animal feeds
  • Home Safari videos from the Cincinnati Zoo, where zookeepers introduce you to the hundreds of animals that make the zoo their home.

2. Visit The Hidden Worlds of National Parks

Take a virtual field trip to Yosemite National Park.

From Yosemite to Mesa Verde, explore some of the USA’s most beloved and beautiful national parks with The Hidden World of National Parks .  

Supported by Google Arts & Culture , students can use the same technology that powers Street View to explore the national parks at their own pace. 

The program also includes guided tours from park rangers, where they share their expertise as you explore. Follow the on-screen prompts and let them guide your adventure!

3. Watch the Monterey Bay Aquarium Sea Otters

A sea otter plays in the water.

Play with the sea otters as they swim around Monterey Bay Aquarium in California! Tune in throughout the day to see them being fed, learn fun facts about otters and watch them play in the water. 

If you’d like to check out some other aquarium-related channels, Monterey Bay Aquarium also offers Open Sea or Kelp Forest live streams.

4. Swim through Palau coral reefs

Travel to the Pacific Ocean through a virtual adventure and see the Palau coral reefs . Hosted by Nature Lab and the Nature Conservancy, this tour teaches students about the importance of preserving some of the most fragile ecosystems in the world — no wetsuit required. 

Take learning to the next level with the Nature Lab’s Teacher’s Guide , which includes discussion questions and related resources to keep learners engaged. 

5. Visit the surface of Mars

Take a virtual tour of the surface of Mars.

It took the Perseverance rover about seven months to get to Mars. But thanks to this virtual tour , you and your students can go for a visit in just one afternoon. 

Created by Google and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, this virtual tour takes you through the history of Mars explorations and turns what might be a far-flung topic into something right at students’ fingertips. They’ll explore the surface of Mars, learn more about the rovers that have studied its surface and understand how Mars exploration fits into the history of space travel.

6. Power up with renewable energy

Powering the Planet from the Nature Conservancy is an interactive lesson that focuses on renewable energy sources. It explains to students how energy around them is necessary for life, and covers how energy can be sourced in a way that’s not harmful to the environment.

All the Nature Conservancy’s programs come with a Teacher Guide , which offers lesson plans and activities relating to the virtual tour. 

7. Walk the Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China in the fall.

The Great Wall of China is over 13,000 miles long, so be sure to pack your walking shoes for this trip!

This virtual tour lets students explore key points in the Great Wall of China, plus see the history and amazing view up close.

8. Float around the International Space Station

Take a virtual tour to the international space station.

Did you know that astronauts have continuously inhabited the International Space Station for 20 years? Now your class can join them!

With tours of the different parts of the space station, facts about the layout and assembly, and information about the different astronauts who’ve visited from around the world, students can get an out-of-this-world experience from the comfort of their home or classroom. 

Plus, there are plenty of images, videos, graphics and media resources to help you tie topics into your curriculum.

9. Scuba dive in the Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef in Australia, perfect for virtual tours.

The Great Barrier Reef is a delicate ecosystem especially vulnerable to the effects of pollution and climate change. 

David Attenborough’s Great Barrier Reef is a tour created in partnership with the Natural History Museum in London that teaches everyone about the beauty and fragility of one of the world’s greatest natural wonders. 

The Great Barrier Reef is also available on Google Street View through Google Maps as one of the first underwater locations to be mapped. 

10. Learn about water and Colombia’s páramo ecosystem

Just outside of Bogotá, Columbia, is one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world. In this virtual lesson, students will learn about how the water cycle plays a vital role in biodiversity, and get an up-close look at the animals that call the area home. 

Use the accompanying Teacher Guide to help students discuss the topic and stay engaged with the lesson. And check out the rest of the Nature Lab's YouTube channel for even more virtual experiences.

11. Tour the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History

Visit the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History as part of a virtual tour.

The Smithsonian Institute is the world’s largest museum — so there are plenty of things for students to explore. 

With a variety of virtual tours to choose from, the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History is full of ways to get students excited about learning. Students can watch narrated tours of different exhibits ranging from history and geography to the research stations in the museum. 

Whether students want to walk through the museum on their own or let someone else do the talking, there’s something for every lesson.

12. Get caught up in the American Revolution

The American Museum of Natural History, which offer virtual learning experiences for students.

History meets the present at the Museum of the American Revolution ! 

This virtual tour lets students see artifacts, meet museum staff and hear stories of real people who fought for American independence.

It also comes with a Classroom Ki t for 2nd to 8th grade that supplements learning and makes it even more meaningful. 

13. Trek up Mt. Everest

This 360 degree video from National Geographic lets students explore Mt. Everest along with a group of researchers. Together, they’ll discover what kind of effects climate change has on the mountain, and how we can work to preserve natural landscapes. 

Not up for climbing mountains? Take a virtual ride on Expedition Everest , the tallest rollercoaster in any Disney park! But beware — there’s a monster lurking in the dark.

14. Get the right angle with Explore Geometry

The gardens of Versailles are a great way to teach students about real-life geometry

Powered by Nearpod, Explore Geometry ’s lesson plans connect classroom lessons with architecture in the natural world.

Students can explore the gardens of Versailles to learn about the geometry of a French garden before moving on to the next lesson and putting their skills to practical use.

15. Wander through the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City

The Great Hall in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City

One of the most well-known museums in the world, students can now explore The Met’s vast collections with the Met 360º Project .

Virtual tours help students get a sense of the space, art and collections inside of the museum. Whether they’re interested in the Met Cloisters or the Arms and Armor gallery, students can go at their own pace, accompanied by a soothing soundtrack. 

You can also book virtual tours with a museum guide to line up with your lesson plan. Tours are free for NYC public schools and all Title I schools, and $200 USD per class for other schools.

16. Explore history in the British Museum

Another world-class museum, students can explore the British Museum in London using Google Street View, read facts about the artifacts and connect what they see to their history lessons. 

Whether it’s the Rosetta Stone, the Elgin Marbles, Egyptian sculpture or any other historical treasure, there’s something every student will find interesting!

If you want to let someone else do the exploring, there’s also a 46-minute virtual walking tour , where you can skip to the sections that are most relevant to you and your class. 

17. Visit the White House

Take a virtual tour of the White House in Washington, D.C.

In Washington, D.C. the White House is the symbolic heart of America, and now students can walk the halls for themselves. 

Whether they want to take a lap around the Oval Office or wander the building, students can explore this virtual tour from the White House Historical Association . Plus, it comes with class tie-ins like vocabulary lessons and other activities to make the experience even more memorable! 

18. Arrive at Ellis Island

Historical photograph of Ellis Island.

Ever wonder what it was like for new immigrants to see the Statue of Liberty and step foot on American soil for the first time?

Now students can experience it for themselves with this virtual tour , a collaboration between Scholastic and the National Park Service. They’ll learn the importance of immigration in the history of the United States and hear real-life stories about the people who came looking for a better life. 

After students watch the video, they can click through this interactive map with facts and stories about the people who came through Ellis Island. 

19. Explore China's forests

In this online tour, students can explore the natural habitats of pandas in the forests of China . They’ll discover how the panda’s home plays a role in understanding our world, learn about local conservation efforts and see the big-picture view of how these vast forests fit into our understanding of nature and climate change. 

Plus, this program also comes with a handy Teacher Guide for you to use in lesson planning!

20. Bundle up in the Arctic tundra

Three polar bears walk across the snow in the Arctic tundra.

Take a virtual field trip all the way up north to the tundra! Discovery Education’s tundra programs for elementary, middle and high school students cover the natural habitat of polar bears, plus their activities and migration patterns.

This virtual tour comes with instructional activities and classroom tie-ins, so you can be sure students are getting a productive learning experience.

21. Go spelunking in the world's largest cave

Inside shot of Son Doong, the largest cave in the world, in Vietnam.

Travel through Vietnam’s Son Doong, the world’s largest cave . First explored by researchers in 2009, this cave is up to 200 meters tall in some areas and even has its own jungle inside. 

It’s estimated that the total length of the cave system is over 200 kilometers, and with this National Geographic tour students can explore to their heart’s content. High definition pictures and helpful facts mean that not only is this an awe-inspiring trip for students, but it’s also educational! 

Because the cave is ecologically sensitive, only a certain number of tourists are allowed to visit each year. This virtual tour is a great way for kids and adults to experience the wonder up close!

22. Browse the Louvre

The outside of the Louvre museum in Paris, France.

Take your students on a quick trip to Paris where you can explore the architecture and art of the Louvre without the crowds. 

Plus, the Louvre also offers Louvre Kids , as well as a Mona Lisa Beyond the Glass virtual app experience where users can learn how Leonardo da Vinci created his most well-known masterpiece.

From kindergarten to high school, virtual field trips are a great way to get students excited about learning. And if you’re homeschooling , they’re the perfect way to get real-world experience without leaving the house!

To get the most out of the experience, keep these tips in mind:

  • Ask students what they’re interested in exploring 
  • Look for virtual experiences that fit into your lesson plan for maximum impact
  • Search for supplementary resources like teacher guides and discussion questions
  • Try out the virtual tour first to make sure it’s worth it and to avoid any unpleasant technical glitches
  • Use virtual field trips at the beginning of a unit to introduce students to new concepts, or at the end as a reward and wrap-up activity

Be sure to follow up with students and see what they liked the most. Then, harness that excitement for your next lesson or activity! 

Prodigy Math Game is an adaptive math platform where students can explore a world filled with adventure, excitement and rewards — all for practicing math! While they’re having a blast answering questions and completing epic quests, Prodigy’s free teacher tools help you align their learning to your classroom lessons. 

Sign up for your free teacher account today!

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Virtual Field Trips

No permission slips required these virtual events let educators take students to amazing places and give them remarkable experiences, without ever leaving the classroom..

Join us for our Virtual Field Trips or watch them on-demand after their premieres. Each no-cost Virtual Field Trip comes with a companion guide packed with standards-aligned, hands-on learning activities! Select one of the options below to register.

Upcoming Live Virtual Field Trips

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“Innovators for Impact” Virtual Field Trip with Olympian Katie Ledecky and Panasonic

February 15, 2023 | 1:00 PM ET • Grades 6-12 Take a trip overseas with 3-time Olympian, 21-time World Champion, and 10-time Olympic medal-winning swimmer Katie Ledecky as she visits a future-forward region of Japan.

On-Demand Virtual Field Trips

  • Health Wellness
  • Careers and College Readiness
  • Tech and Manufacturing
  • Science, STEM, Exploration
  • Financial Literacy/ Economics
  • The Natural World or Conservation/ Environment
  • Community Engagement
  • Argumentation with Evidence
  • Collecting and Analyzing Data
  • Agriculture

Bridge to the Future: A Virtual Field Trip into Extended Reality

Virtual Field Trips for Kids: Worldwide Wonders

Online adventures allow kids and their families to take safe field trips around the world from home.

Virtual Field Trips for Kids

A mom and her son and daughter look at a laptop screen in their home

Getty Images

Any day can be a vacation day with an online trip, and many destinations across the country have adapted programs to deliver online content during the pandemic.

Field trips, the highlight of school days for many elementary-age children, were stifled during the height of the coronavirus pandemic, so parents like Jacqueline Davis of Westlake, Ohio, sought out alternatives. She found one on Facebook: virtual meetups with animal caretakers at Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, which showed her sons Aston, 7, and Luke, 4, fun facts like how a zookeeper cuts elephants' toenails and gives the two-ton pachyderms a bath.

"When you attend the zoo on a regular day, you are seeing animals from behind the railings and fences, but the virtual field trips were a unique opportunity to go behind the scenes," Davis says.

The hourlong virtual field trip sparked lots of questions and kept the boys engaged, even though they were in their living room rather than piling into a school bus for a day trip or touring the zoo grounds with their parents. "It was an up-close and personal way to meet the animals that we've never had," Davis says.

With reduced travel and in-person field trips during the pandemic, more families are looking for ways to get out safely and expose their children to new experiences without risking health and safety. Enter the virtual field trip and online experiences that open up a wide world of wonder while removing barriers like transportation, travel, cost and time.

Any day can be a vacation day with an online trip, and many destinations across the country have adapted programs to deliver online content during the pandemic. For example, the National Park Service offers virtual tours of its 423 sites, from an interactive scavenger hunt on the Black Heritage Trail in Boston to explorer videos of California's Death Valley.

"We connect families to history-inspiring stories, challenges faced, as well as remarkable landscapes, cultures, art, music, science and more," says Shauna Potocky, acting director of the Ocean Alaska Science and Learning Center .

Virtual field trips also give families an opportunity to explore bucket-list destinations and potentially plan where they would like to visit in the future.

"It's an opportunity to explore the world, cultures and anything that is not readily available in your local community. It takes away boundaries and is cost-effective," says Tiffany Foster, a PTA leader in Durham, North Carolina, adding that her middle-schooler "visited" the Grand Canyon and learned about conservation. "Now we put this trip on our family wish list."

Choosing a Virtual Field Trip for Kids

With a world of options to discover, how do you decide where to start and what to visit? First, consider a child's interests. "What excites them? When you answer that, you can make connections based on what your child enjoys, where you hope to visit or things you want to see," Potocky says.

Download and print a map, such as the one by the National Park Service that pinpoints its sites. "Let your child pick out some places to navigate and learn about," Potocky suggests.

Missy Higgens-Linder, director of learning and engagement at the Cleveland Museum of Art, says quality programs should encourage practicing attention, connection, creativity, perspective and wonder.

Ultimately, a virtual visit should go beyond the screen. Some programs make this possible by providing activity kits prior to the experience, Higgens-Linder says. Other resources include online downloadables. "We want to make sure there are asynchronous resources families can access at any time, even if they have just five or 10 minutes," she says.

Be sure the virtual field trip is designed for the child's age and stage, Higgens-Linder adds. Some resources organize online experiences by grade or age group.

"Our website's learn section has resources tailored to developmental stages, so a parent of a younger child can tap into My Very First Art Class at Home, and older kids can explore our Collections Connections series that group works from our collections around themes that help them explore big ideas," she explains.

Also consider the group size and whether a particular child will feel lost in an online crowd. Some children can handle large online meetings better than others, points out Jessica Drzewucki, principal of Ps 128 Bensonhurst in the Brooklyn borough of New York City.

Virtual field trips that allow kids to engage with the "tour guide" and ask questions make for a more personalized experience. "It feels like something special," she says, while some of the open trips that do not require preregistration "can feel like going to the movies, where there is not that much interaction," she says.

Drzewucki has also had success with focused virtual trips vs. general tours. "Rather than 'a visit to the zoo,' I recommend 'amazing lizards of South America,'" she says as an example. "With a focus that is in-depth, they walk away excited, knowledgeable and they have had an experience vs. a Google Maps overview."

Make the Most of a Virtual Field Trip

Just as a parent prepares the family for a vacation or educational excursion to a museum or park, setting expectations and doing a bit of legwork will ensure that kids get the most out of a virtual field trip.

"It's best when we have kids think and talk about the topic ahead of time so they are prepared with questions to ask, or they can answer their own questions throughout the online trip," Drzewucki says.

Here are additional pointers for parents:

Mind the time . Drzewucki finds that 60- to 90-minute virtual field trips offer well-rounded experiences. "Shorter 'visits' can feel not worth waiting for everyone to sign into the meeting and get settled, but much longer and kids will lose interest, even with the most engaging topics," she says. Consider the child's age and attention span for consuming online content.

Clear a space . Find a quiet area free of distractions, and consider giving the child noise-canceling headphones so he or she can tune in and focus on the virtual field trip. Plan on signing on early to take full advantage of the experience.

Bring note-taking supplies . Pencils, crayons, paper and perhaps a journal where a child can record questions and observations will enhance the online experience by making it more tangible.

"For me, it's important to consider how you can make it an active experience," Potocky says. "Ask your child to draw a picture of something they saw, or compare and contrast elements of what they learned to elements where they live. Or, they might draw a map of a virtual tour they took. Writing reflections are also a great option."

Be curious . "Parents can model the learning by asking questions and not having all of the answers," Higgens-Linder says. From there, parents can encourage their child to dig deeper and access complementary materials such as downloadable activities or videos, she recommends. "These can be starting points for more independent exploration."

Virtual Field Trips to Try

Connect to destinations near and far with a variety of virtual field trips for kids. Here are 20 picks to plug into upcoming "travel" plans.

  • American Museum of Natural History
  • The British Museum
  • The Cleveland Museum of Art
  • Boston Children's Museum
  • Plimoth Plantation
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • The National Park Service
  • The White House
  • Buckingham Palace
  • The National Aquarium
  • The Bronx Zoo
  • Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
  • San Diego Zoo
  • Shedd Aquarium
  • M&M Factory Tour
  • Recycling Exposed
  • Slime in Space
  • Cracking Up

American Museum of Natural History . The Scientist is In offers a family-friendly livestream with museum scientists and researchers, while Astronomy Online is a tour of the universe by museum astrophysicists.

The British Museum . Explore ancient civilizations and engage in courses that include live music and performances. The virtual visit, Peek into prehistory , includes live activities, interactive quizzes and question-and-answer sessions as children learn the difference between the Bronze Age and Iron Age in Britain by using archaeological objects to explore homes of people then and now.

The Cleveland Museum of Art . From virtual studio programs to creative challenges , the museum opens its collections to virtual visitors with webcams, downloadable activities, classes and activities that incorporate online and hands-on experiences.

The Louvre . While the Louvre is closed during the pandemic, it offers virtual tours allowing visitors to take in the museum's architecture while enjoying tours like Founding Myths: From Hercules to Darth Vader, which explores how illustrators, painters, puppeteers, filmmakers and musicians draw inspiration from myths and bring them to life with art.

Boston Children's Museum . Get ready to play as the Boston Children's Museum shows and tells children about its features through virtual tours of all its floors. Check out exhibits like Explore-a-Saurus to observe fossil evidence and formulate theories of what dinosaurs looked like and how they behaved.

Landmarks and Parks

Plimoth Plantation . Step aboard the Mayflower, tour a pilgrims village, experience the day-to-day life of Wampanoag Indians and learn what the first Thanksgiving was really like.

The Nature Conservancy . Virtual field trips and online courses allow children to engage in learning activities ranging from exploring coral reefs while in a canoe to touring rainforests and deserts. Virtual travel includes destinations in China, Peru and within the U.S., for example.

The National Park Service . The National Park Service opens up a world of opportunity to virtually engage with wildlife conservationists, take part in scavenger hunts, listen to stories and see some of nature's wonders from the Great Smoky Mountains to Yellowstone National Park. Download a map and pick a nearby park or choose one far away from home.

The White House . A virtual tour of the White House puts one closer to the artifacts and rooms in the U.S. president's home than is possible in person. The tour walks visitors through the halls and offers access to all public rooms on the ground and state floors. Visitors can also download a companion digital notebook with materials including vocabulary, reflection questions and activities.

Buckingham Palace . Have a royal adventure at Buckingham Palace in London with tours of the Grand Staircase, White Drawing Room, Throne Room and Blue Drawing Room.

Volcanoes . The U.S. Geological Survey monitors 169 potentially active volcanoes and provides an interactive map allowing visitors to find out about any of them.

Zoos and Aquariums

The National Aquarium . Explore scenes through the aquarium's webcam, from alligators and sea turtles to ecosystems like the Amazon River and Channel Islands.

The Bronx Zoo . Experience a virtual encounter with a keeper who answers questions, and meet some stars from Animal Planet's "The Zoo." The Bronx Zoo says its virtual visits get participants close enough to possibly hear a cheetah purring.

Cleveland Metroparks Zoo . Virtual field trips come with companion science lessons, and Zoo Science Units include at-home activities, lesson plans and videos organized by grade.

San Diego Zoo . The Zoo Kids webcams let children zoom in on their favorite animals, from apes to hippos and polar bears. Kids Corner videos introduce young viewers to topics like how camouflage works and why meat-eating animals are misunderstood.

Shedd Aquarium . Chicago's aquarium offers online minicamps such as Shedd to the Rescue, and up-close looks at features such as the Wild Reef exhibit that showcases the Philippine coral reefs. Check out Shedd's Facebook page for online events.

Just for Fun

M&M Factory Tour . The Food Network takes visitors on a tour of the M&M factory in New Jersey that shows how the chocolate-coated candies are created.

Recycling Exposed . Ever wonder what happens to the plastic and glass tossed into a recycling bin? Republic Services has a video tour of its recycling center that shows how sophisticated equipment works to sort, pack and ship recyclable materials.

Slime in Space . Nickelodeon partnered with NASA astronauts at the International Space Station on a 15-minute virtual field trip that takes visitors 250 miles above the earth to see how slime and water react in a microgravity environment. Tucked into the fun-filled experience are science and physics lessons – and there's a bit of a mess involved, too.

Cracking Up . Kids can learn what's involved in modern-day egg farming on Virtual Egg Farm Field Trips, a partnership between the American Egg Board and Discovery Education. Farmers share their sustainable practices, how robots work on egg farms and what keeps their generations-old operations going.

Searching for a school? Explore our K-12 directory .

Online Education Resources and COVID-19

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Tags: education , children , elementary school , middle school , Coronavirus

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The 19 Best Free Virtual Field Trips of 2024

Stuck at home? Travel virtually all over the world instead (but seriously, check out the Son Doong Cave)

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When you can't get away, your kids still can by taking a virtual field trip to a museum, farm, zoo, or another fun location. We compiled our list of favorites to help you keep your kids engaged and entertained. Some of these are virtual tours (you can actively decide where to go on the tour) and others are video walkthroughs (just watch and learn), but all give you a great experience of the location.

Best Art-Centric Virtual Tour: The Met

A glimpse at some of the greatest works of art created.

Online exhibits on various topics.

There's only one view of the museum currently available.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is home to over 5,000 years of art from around the world. You can see some of it from the comfort of your home. Take a virtual stroll through part of the museum using Google Street View. There are also numerous online exhibits on topics like Coco Chanel, Vermeer, Catholic allegory in art, and more.

Best Tour of Space: NASA

The volume of space videos.

The approachable aspect of the videos.

So much more to see on the site.

It's not easily searchable unless you know what you're looking for.

This might be cheating a bit because it's really a collection of videos, but, oh boy, what a collection to tour! The Galleries open up an array of videos covering space topics from testing a parachute for Mars to moving water in space. Each video is a mini virtual tour that will awe kids and encourage interest in science and space.

Best Tour of the White House: Google Arts & Culture's The White House

Stunning 360-degree images.

See inside and outside the White House.

Offers views of 140 paintings.

Once inside a tour, it's hard to know what you're looking at.

No search functions.

Every President since John Adams has occupied the White House and now your children can visit it, too. Google Arts & Culture offers four museum views (three tours of The White House and one of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building) plus a look at more than 140 paintings that grace (or have graced) the walls of the country's most famous abode. The 360-degree images let kids explore to their heart's desire.

Best Cave Virtual Tour: Son Doong Cave

Son Doong is beautiful.

The virtual tour includes lots of information.

Zoom into areas for a more detailed look.

No supplemental online activities.

Son Doong is the world's largest natural cave. Located in Vietnam, it features a subterranean river and the largest cross-section of any cave worldwide. National Geographic's virtual tour lets you explore the cave with full 360-degree views and immersive sounds. You can even zoom in one area to check out the campers in their tents. Son Doong is beautiful and worth a virtual visit.

Best National Park Virtual Tour: Yellowstone

Offers multiple tours.

Lots of historical information.

Amazing images.

No video tours.

Lots of written information that can turn off some kids.

Yellowstone offers seven virtual tours appropriate for older elementary and middle school ages. There's a lot of written information along with the images, and the tours aren't in video. However, the information is fascinating, and the photos are stunning.

From learning about old Fort Yellowstone to discovering park anomalies like Mud Volcano, these tours are a great way for kids to discover unique facts about America.

Best Natural History Tour: Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

So many exhibits to see!

Easy, clickable maps.

Quick and easy to navigate.

It's not always easy to read the signs in the exhibits.

This iconic museum is dedicated to understanding the natural world and humanity's place in it. There's so much to see it can't possibly be listed here. However, the museum offers an online tour of most of its exhibits. Split this tour up into multiple lessons, so kids don't get overwhelmed.

Skip the ground floor and go straight to the first or second floors.

Best Aquarium Virtual Tour: National Aquarium

Easy to find exhibits.

Fun to explore using the 360-degree options.

Some scenes spin quickly, which can frustrate young learners.

Baltimore's National Aquarium features more than 20,000 aquatic animals. Kids can click and drag images to navigate their way around and use arrows, the map, or a scene list to explore various exhibits. Explore eight areas, such as the Amazon River, a tropical rain forest, and jellyfish.

Best Tours of the World: AirPano

Bright, well-produced videos and images.

Offers tours of numerous countries.

Includes video and still frame-images.

What's not to like?

AirPano has a variety of tours in China, Portugal, Switzerland, and more countries. Children can visit the Zhangjiajie Glass Bridge in China, an underwater cave in Indonesia, ski resorts in France, and more destinations around the globe.

What makes this site so good is that it offers narrations of several tours, provides closeups through interactive actions, and includes short chunks of written information that's easy for kids of most ages to read. The tours are also fairly short, which makes these tours great for younger kids, but older kids will still enjoy the trip.

Best Virtual Tour for Car Lovers: Lane Motor Museum

Totally unique tour.

An inside look that allows for deep diving into collections.

There's no way to tell what a specific vehicle is unless you know cars.

Scroll to the bottom of the link to watch a fun virtual tour of one of the most unique car museums in the world. Lane Motor Museum is home to an oddball collection of vehicles dating from the 1920s up to modern times.

Your child will love seeing amphibious vehicles, microcars, prototypes, and more. The tour is easy to click through and offers six angles to entertain viewers.

Best Tours of Nature: Nature Works Everywhere

Tours are narrated and easy to follow.

Provides student handouts, vocabulary, and discussion questions.

We wish there was a larger library of tours!

Explore nature around the world with Nature Works Everywhere's virtual tours. Visit the coral reefs of Palau, the deserts and grasslands of Africa, a rainforest (from a canoe's viewpoint), a renewable energy plant, and more.

The tours are narrated and give great, quick facts to help kids learn in simple, straightforward ways. All tours are appropriate for grades 3 through 12 but are marked with notes about the grades most likely to enjoy the tour.

Best Historical Tour: Ellis Island

A clear explanation of Ellis Island, how it worked, and why it was needed.

Includes children asking questions of tour guides.

The images in much of the tour are small in order to focus on the tour guides.

Ellis Island is a key piece of American history. This virtual tour offers lots of anecdotes and features actual guides from Ellis Island telling stories. Plus, it includes lots of pictures and views of the island.

It's more appropriate for fourth grade and up, mainly due to the litany of facts and complexity of the information provided.

Best Slime-Based Virtual Tour: Slime in Space

Nickelodeon

It's playful and educational.

Good production values.

Fun experiments.

It's a video, not an interactive virtual tour.

What happens to Nickelodeon's iconic slime when it's in space? That's the concept behind the Slime in Space virtual field trip. Featuring real astronauts and Nickelodeon celebrities, the 15-minute video shows kids how slime and water react in a microgravity environment 250 miles above the Earth. Along the way, it answers burning questions like, "Is slime a solid or a liquid?" and "Can you slime a person in space?" (The answer is: yes, very slowly.)

Best Virtual Zoo Tour: San Diego Zoo

Live cams of the animals.

A variety of educational videos.

Fun games and activities.

Fixed camera angles mean you're not always guaranteed to see the animals.

The San Diego Zoo is home to more than 3,500 animals of more than 650 species and subspecies. It's widely considered one of the best zoos in the world. But, if you can't make it to California, it has a robust virtual experience online.

You can peek in on the animals through live cams. There's also a variety of videos that teach kids about vultures or show them how to draw a tiger, for example. There are also zoo-related games and activities kids can do at home.

Best General Farm Tour: FarmFood 360

360-degree views of the farm.

Offers a free app for Android and iOS.

It can be hard to see things on a mobile device.

FarmFood 360 gives an inside look at the activities of a Canadian farm. Kids see 360-degree views of the farm as they learn about milk and cheese production, sheep farming, egg processing, and more.

There's an app available for Android and iOS devices, and it's compatible with some virtual reality headsets.

Best Virtual Planetarium: Stellarium

Realistic night sky simulation.

Mobile apps are available.

Includes a telescope control module for experienced astronomers.

Can be difficult to navigate.

The mobile apps aren't free, but the money supports the project.

Stellarium Web is an online planetarium created by two brothers. Offering an accurate and realistic view of the night sky, it lets you pan around and spot stars, satellites, and other celestial bodies.

It offers mobile apps for Android and iOS that aren't free. The money goes toward paying server and development costs for the two-person project.

Best Living-History Virtual Tour: Colonial Williamsburg

Next best thing to being there.

The virtual scavenger hunt.

The virtual tours are highly interactive.

Virtual tour models can load slowly.

Condensation or inclement weather can obstruct the webcam views.

Colonial Williamsburg is a living-history museum in Virginia that offers a glimpse at what life was like in the 18th century. Its virtual tour is highly interactive and includes videos, informational signs, and 3D models you can rotate.

With its various webcams, you can see the armory, courthouse, merchants square, and more. Colonial Williamsburg's website also offers a virtual scavenger hunt your kids can participate in as they tour the area.

Best European Museum Virtual Tour: The Louvre

It's the Louvre.

The website offers a list of online family-friendly activities.

The virtual tours include a map and an information button.

The website offers limited language options.

Sure, we'd love to jet off to France and tour its fabulous museums personally. But if that's not an option, the Louvre has several virtual tours available on its website. The offerings include exhibitions on the body in movement, founding myths, Egyptian antiquities, and more.

The Louvre also has a handy list of family-friendly online resources everyone can enjoy, including a Mona Lisa VR experience.

Best Factory Virtual Tour: M&M Factory Tour

Zoonar RF / Getty Images

Who doesn't love chocolate?

360-degree views of the factory.

It's short.

The Food Network teamed up with candy maker Mars to give M&M fans a virtual tour of one of its factories. During the short YouTube video, viewers can pan around as a tour guide explains how unrefined chocolate is turned into the little candies we know and love.

Best General Virtual Tour Resource: Discovery Education

An eclectic variety of virtual field trips.

Watch live or on demand.

Trips come with a companion guide packed with activities.

A schedule of when field trips go live would be nice.

Discovery Education offers a variety of virtual field trips for kids learning from home. The offerings change often but currently include an NFL experience, a doodling experience meant to encourage creativity, and a virtual field trip through the internet of things. You can watch the field trips live or catch the videos later on-demand.

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Virtual Field Trips

Two children stand in a grassy field with a snowy mountain range in the background. One child looks through binoculars and the other looks in a book.

Explore the World with Virtual Field Trips

Designed for ages 9-15 but customizable for all ages, virtual field trips allow students to travel the world and explore natural environments without leaving the classroom. Each virtual field trip contains a video, teacher guide and student activities.

Minorities in Shark Sciences Education Hub

Ocean Heroes: Coastal Frontline Communities and Climate Justice Made possible with support from the Bezos Family Foundation and Students Rebuild

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Wild Biomes: America’s Rainforests & Deserts

Two wildly different ecosystems, both dependent on the same precious resource: Water. On this virtual field trip, we’ll travel to Seattle and Arizona.

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The Coral Reefs of Palau

Join our expert scientist, marine biologist Stephanie Wear, on a virtual field trip to the coral reefs of Palau where you'll explore amazing underwater cities.

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China’s Great Forests

Join our expert scientist Yue Wang, a conservation planning officer for The Nature Conservancy, on a virtual field trip across the world to two stunning provinces in China.

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Powering the Planet: Renewable Energy

Join scientist Alex Wegmann as we embark on a Virtual Field Trip to explore a compelling question: How can we get the energy we need without harming nature?

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Journey of Water: Colombia’s Páramo

In this virtual field trip, we will explore the magical páramo ecosystem and the stunning mountain landscapes found just beyond the capital city of Bogotá.

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Peru: A Coastal Ecosystem

Join fisheries scientist Matias Caillaux to explore the Humboldt Current Ecosystem off the coast of Peru while learning about the area’s amazing diversity and productivity.

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Ridge to Reef: A Virtual Field Trip to Hong Kong

The “Ridge to Reef” (R2R) concept is a holistic approach that takes into consideration all the environments within a watershed — from the top of the mountains down to the ocean — and shows that what happens on land affects what happens in the water.

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Access resources aligned to The Nature Conservancy’s research and designed specifically for a young audience and classroom use.

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Educational Virtual Field Trips for Middle School

Collage of three images. Top one is Niagra falls. Bottom left is the governor's house in Williamsburg. Bottom right is artwork in a museum.

Explore the world through educational virtual field trips for middle school. There are a bunch of virtual tours available online and many of them have fun activities you can use in your own classroom or home school.

As a homeschooling family, we understand that the world is our classroom. Even if your family loves to travel, it’s not always practical. That’s why I love virtual field trips. With the help of technology, you can visit the places you’re learning about without having to leave your home.

Collage of three images. Top one is Niagra falls. Bottom left is the governor's house in Williamsburg. Bottom right is artwork in a museum.

This post contains affiliate links .

For this list, I’ve decided to focus on sites where kids could expand their school lessons by learning more about art, history, science, and geography.

This is by no means an exhaustive list, but a jumping-off point for you and your teens to start to discover all the locations and collections available to view remotely.

You can easily add some of these locations to your homeschool lessons or just to have fun as a family. To go on a virtual field trip, log on to one of these sites and take a tour from your the comfort of your own home.

Table of Contents

Virtual Field Trips for Middle School Science

Expand your science lesson plans by visiting these sites that cover different science topics .

African Wildlife Cams

See all kinds of African animals, both day and night, with these wildlife cams located all across Africa.

Clearwater Aquarium

Visit Winter and Hope along with the other animals at the Clearwater Aquarium . Throughout the week they host virtual field trips that kids can participate in and you can always watch their webcams.

Bahamian Coral Reef

Take a trip to the Bahamas to view the coral reefs . You’ll find various films along with a teacher guide to help your older kids learn about coral reefs and their importance to the Bahamian people. 

Georgia Aquarium

Not only can you watch animals all day through the Georgia Aquarium webcams, but they also host a variety of live streaming events to learn about the animals in their care.

Visit the Nature Lab and choose from a wide variety of nature-based field trips for middle schoolers. Your kids can tour places like the rainforest in Borneo, the Coral Reefs of Palau, and China’s great forests.

Visit the volcanoes within the United States through live webcams, videos, and pictures.

Elephant walking on savannah.

History Virtual Field Trips

Bring this subject to life by visiting the actual sites where history took place. Learn about the people, events, and locations around the globe that shaped our world.

Washington D.C.

There are a ton of field trips available for Washington DC that will make excellent additions to your American history curriculum.

Learn about our government by touring the Supreme Court and US Capitol. You can also check out famous landmarks like the Lincoln Memorial and the White House.

Anne Frank’s Hiding Place

This website brings Anne Frank’s Diary to life. Virtually tour Anne Frank’s Hiding Place in Amsterdam and learn about the eight people living there during WWII.

They have a narrative 3D tour of their secret hiding place available.

Colonial Williamsburg

When you’re studying early American History, make sure to tour Colonial Williamsburg by taking some of the amazing electronic field trips they offer.

There are also videos students can watch and podcasts they can listen to in order to learn more about the Colonial era.

Take a virtual tour of Gettysburg and learn about this important Civil War battle site. Virtual Gettysburg is another site that has additional distance tours available for students.

Mount Vernon

Visit George Washington’s beloved estate, Mount Vernon , and learn more about this founding father and first president.

The Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island

See The Statue of Liberty through virtual tours and webcams. Learn Lady Liberty’s history and let your kids become a WebRanger. While you’re there, take some time to tour Ellis Island as well.

They’re just two of the awesome virtual field trips to New York City available.

World Wonders

Let students tour some of the modern and ancient wonders of the world from home. There are a wide variety of sites for older kids to choose from.

National WWII Museum

See the artifacts, maps, listen to speeches, and more to learn about this part of history in the National WWII Museum .

National Park Service’s Museum Management Program

The National Park Service’s Museum Management Program boasts an impressive collection of virtual museum exhibits dedicated to American historical treasures.

Close up of cannon from Gettysburg Battlefield.

Art Virtual Field Trips

Encourage your tweens to check out some of the most famous works of art from their computer.

Google Art Project

The Google Art Project is an enormous collection of world art that can be sorted by artist, museum, or artwork.

From their computer, students will be able to get up close to the artwork as well as take virtual tours of hundreds of art collections/museums.

Tweens can see the famous galleries of the Louvre and the collections located within them, including the iconic Mona Lisa thanks to a variety of virtual tours.

Museum of Modern Art

Students can view the almost 200,000 works of art housed in the famous Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

Van Gogh Museum

Virtually tour the Van Gogh Museum and get up close and personal with the largest collection of this famous artist’s work.

Close up of art mural in an art museum.

Geography Virtual Field Trips

For your geography studies, let your tween tour these world sites from home. Some are so detailed, they’ll feel like they’re really there. While we love playing geography board games , virtual tours are some of our favorite world geography activities .

Eiffel Tower

If your tweens dream of visiting Paris and climbing the Eiffel Tower , now they can view this famous landmark and the stunning city from a variety of angles.

The Grand Canyon

Learn about the Grand Canyon through virtual tours, interactive programs, history, archaeology, and more.

Great Wall of China

Have your older kids walk along the Great Wall of China , China’s greatest tourist attraction from the comfort of your couch.

Redwood National Park

Take a virtual trip to the Redwood National Park and check out the Ranger videos, scientific research, and historical information on the American Indians who made the redwoods their home.

Niagra Falls

Different virtual tours will let you see the wonder of Niagra Falls from a variety of angles.

Denali National Park

This site shows viewers interactive panoramas from various places within Denali National Park .

It also has virtual tours, videos, podcasts, multimedia presentations, and webcams that tweens will love.

Yellowstone National Park

When you’re learning about our country’s natural wonders like Yellowstone, head to this site to view photos, watch videos, and listen to podcasts all related to this beautiful place.

The Great Wall of China

As you can see, there are so many educational sites out there that older kids can access from home.

These are great learning tools and I hope that you add some of them to your homeschool lesson plans. Not only will they help kids learn, but they’re also cool places to visit.

More Educational Virtual Tours for Tweens

  • For a wide variety of virtual tours , here are over 300 sites that offer remote visits. Kids can view museums, exhibits, and points of interest.
  • Check out the wonder of Alaska with 20+ online offerings.
  • When you’re studying geography, take a trip to see our national parks . See their raw, natural beauty and learn why they’re treasured spots in our country.
  • Take a virtual tour of the Alamo and then add some suggested activities and resources to your history lessons.

Male lion standing on African savannah.

Resources for Virtual Field Trips

  • One of my favorite tools for field trips and distance learning is Discovery Education . They have all kinds of videos, tours, and programs that bring the world right into your home. They also host regular virtual events that tweens can join.
  • Take your virtual learning to the next level with a VR headset .

What are your favorite educational virtual field trips for middle school?

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virtual field trip middle school

Virtual Field trips

virtual field trip middle school

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Tech & Learning

Best Virtual Field Trips

A s school budgets continue to shrink and classroom time is at a premium, virtual field trips have become a great opportunity for educators to help students experience places around the globe without getting on a bus, or even leaving their classroom.

Being able to see and experience a significant cultural institution, historic site, or natural landscape with the help of immersive technology, such as virtual or augmented reality, can help make lessons more engaging and exciting.

Here are the best virtual field trips for education, organized by art museums, history museums, civics-related sites, aquariums and nature sites, STEM-related experiences, and more!

Virtual Art Museum Tours

- Benaki Museum, Greece Showcasing the development of Greek culture, including more than 120,000 artworks from the Paleolithic Era to modern day. 

- British Museum, London Explore more than 4,000 years of art and historical objects from around the world.

- National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C Features more than 40,000 American works of art, including paintings, works on paper, and etchings. 

- Musee d’Orsay, Paris Displays art created between 1848 and 1914, including works by van Gogh, Renoir, Manet, Monet, and Degas

- National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Seoul, Korea The representative museum of modern Korean visual art, plus architecture, design and crafts.

- Pergamon, Berlin, Germany Features sculpture, artifacts, and other items from ancient Greece. 

- Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands Home to the largest collection of artworks by Vincent van Gogh in the world, including more than 200 paintings, 500 drawings, and 750 of the artist's letters.

- Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy A dynastic collection of ancient sculpture, artwork, and artifacts, established by the renowned Medici family.

- MASP, Sao Paolo, Brazil Brazil's first modern museum, displaying 8,000 works, including paintings, sculptures, objects, photographs, and costumes from a range of periods, encompassing Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas. 

- National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City, Mexico Devoted to the archaeology and history of Mexico’s pre-Hispanic civilizations.

- Museum of Fine Arts, Boston A comprehensive collection that ranges from prehistoric times to modern day, featuring world-renowned paintings by Rembrandt, Monet, Gauguin, and Cassatt, plus mummies, sculpture, ceramics, and masterpieces of African and Oceanic art.

- The Frick Collection, New York Distinguished Old Master paintings and outstanding examples of European sculpture and decorative arts.

- J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles Works of art dating from the eighth through the twenty-first century, including European paintings, drawings, sculpture, illuminated manuscripts, decorative arts, and European, Asian, and American photographs.

- The Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois Thousands of artworks—from world-renowned icons (Picasso, Monet, Matisse, Hopper) to lesser-known gems from every corner of the globe—as well as books, writings, reference materials, and other resources.

- The Metropolitan Museum of Art A colossal collection of art, cultural objects, and historical artifacts from over 5,000 years of human history. 

- The Louvre Museum Packed with iconic works of art, from da Vinci, Michelangelo, Botticelli, and other renowned artists.

Virtual History Museum Tours

- National Museum of the United States Air Force The oldest and largest military aviation museum in the world features dozens of vintage aircraft and hundreds of historical objects. 

- Smithsonian Museum of Natural History One of the largest repositories of natural history on the planet, featuring more than 145 million artifacts and specimens. 

- National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum Home to an internationally renowned collection of Western art and artifacts, including paintings, sculpture, photographs, and historical objects. 

- The Prague Castle, Czechoslovakia Prague Castle is the largest coherent castle complex in the world, consisting of palaces and ecclesiastical buildings of various architectural styles, from the remains of Romanesque-style buildings from the 10th century through Gothic modifications of the 14th century. 

- The Colosseum, Rome One of the most iconic structures in world history.

- Machu Picchu, Peru Explore the 15th-century mountaintop citadel built by the Inca. 

- The Great Wall of China One of the wonders of the world, stretching more than 3,000 miles across multiple provinces of China

- The National WWII Museum’s Manhattan Project virtual field trip A cross-country virtual expedition to discover the science, sites, and stories involved with the creation of the atomic bomb.

- Discovering Ancient Egypt In addition to stories of the great kings and queens, learn about the ancient Egyptian gods and mummification, pyramids, and temples through interactive maps, photos, drawings, and paintings. 

- Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists’ Doomsday Clock Virtual Tour  Through personal stories, interactive media, and pop culture artifacts, explore seven decades of history, from the dawn of the nuclear age to the significant policy questions of today.

- U.S. Capitol Virtual Tour  Video tours of historic rooms and spaces, some of which are not open to the public, research resources, and teaching materials.

Civics Virtual Field Trips

- Virtual Field Trip to the Census Bureau A behind-the-scenes introduction to the U.S. Census Bureau, featuring exclusive interviews with subject matter experts.

- National Constitution Center Virtual Tour A virtual interactive multimedia tour of the National Constitution Center on Independence Mall in Philadelphia.

- Virtual field trip to Ellis Island Hear first-hand stories told by those who came through Ellis Island, see historical photographs and films, and read fascinating facts.

- The City of U.S. Virtual Field Trip A virtual field trip of Washington, D.C., hosted by First Lady Dr. Jill Biden.

- I Do Solemnly Swear: The U.S. Presidential Inauguration Featuring questions submitted by students and answered by experts, this virtual field trip travels to our nation's capital to explore the Presidential Inauguration, past and present.

Aquariums & Nature Parks Virtual Field Trips 

- National Aquarium Home to 20,000 animals covering 800 species, from the depths of the ocean to the canopy of the rain forest. 

- Georgia Aquarium Live webcam feeds for aquatic creatures, such as beluga whales, penguins, alligators, sea otters, and even underwater puffins.

- San Diego Zoo Live looks at koala, baboons, apes, tigers, platypuses, penguins, and more. 

- Five U.S. National Parks Explore Kenai Fjords in Alaska, volcanoes in Hawai'i, Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico, Bryce Canyon in Utah, and Dry Tortugas in Florida.

- Yellowstone National Park (live cams) Nine webcams—one live-streaming and eight static—provide views of around the North Entrance and Mammoth Hot Springs, Mount Washburn, the West Entrance, and the Upper Geyser Basin.

- Mystic Aquarium One of three U.S. facilities holding Steller sea lions, and it has the only beluga whales in New England. 

- Monterey Bay Aquarium (live cams) Ten live cams, including sharks, sea otters, jellyfish, and penguins.

- Son Doong Cave  The world's largest natural cave, located in Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park in Vietnam.

- PORTS (California Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students)  K-12 students can connect with live interpretive staff and learn academic content standards within the context of California’s dynamic State Park System. 

STEM Virtual Field Trips

- NASA at Home Virtual tours and apps from NASA, including tours of the Goddard Space Flight Center, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, International Space Station, and Hubble Space Telescope Mission Operations Center, plus excursions to Mars and the Moon.

- California Science Center Build your own virtual field trip for grades K-5 with NGSS-aligned content, in both English and Spanish.

- Carnegie Science Center Exhibit Explorations Students in grades 3-12 explore the science behind Carnegie Science Center's most popular exhibits, with an interactive focus on engineering/ robotics, animals, space/astronomy and the human body.

- Stanley Black & Decker Makerspace Students can see and experience first-hand how math, science, technology, creativity, and teamwork can lead to technological advancements.

- Slime in Space Take students 250 miles above Earth to the International Space Station to learn along with astronauts how slime reacts to microgravity compared to how water reacts. 

- Clark Planetarium Virtual Skywatch Free for schools, virtual versions of the live “Skywatch” planetarium dome presentations that directly correlate to 6th grade and 4th grade SEEd astronomy standards. 

- Alaska Volcano Observatory Alaska's active volcanoes offer superb opportunities for basic scientific investigations of volcanic processes.

- The Nature Conservancy’s Nature Lab virtual field trips Designed for grades 5-8 but customizable for all ages, each virtual field trip contains a video, teacher guide, and student activities.

- Great Lakes Now Virtual Field Trip  Learn more about the importance of coastal wetlands, the danger of algal blooms, and a deep dive into lake sturgeon. Designed for 6-8th grade.

- Access Mars Explore the real surface of Mars, as recorded by NASA's Curiosity rover.

- Easter Island The story of a team of archaeologists and a 75-person crew who sought to unravel how the hundreds of giant stone statues that dominate the island's coast were moved and erected.

- FarmFresh360 Learn about Canadian food and farming in 360º.

- Virtual Egg Farm Field Trips  Visit modern egg farms across the United States.

- Online agriculture education curriculum The American Royal Field Trip features a virtual tour of production agriculture; innovation and technology; and the food system. Lesson plans, activities, and short quizzes are also provided.

Miscellaneous Virtual Field Trips

- American Writers Museum new live Virtual Field Trips feature a guided exploration of AWM’s permanent exhibits or two online exhibits; staff-led interactive gameplay and pop quizzes about major literary works; and Writer Wednesdays, offering students a weekly opportunity to connect with a published author about the craft of writing.

- Kahn Academy Imagineering in a Box Go behind the scenes with Disney Imagineers and complete project-based exercises to design a theme park.

- Google Arts & Culture  Explore galleries, museums, and more.

Exploring Machu Picchu in Peru, via You Visit

Virtual Field Trips

Bring your curriculum to life with Virtual Field Trips.

Take your K-8 students on a learning experience they’ll never forget, without even leaving the classroom.

virtual field trip middle school

Every teacher wants to be the one their students remember forever.

But things like budget cuts and bigger classrooms stand between teachers and the education they want to give their students.

Virtual Field Trips bridges the gap between your curriculum requirements and your resources so every teacher can give every student the memorable education they deserve.

Students' favorite teachers are using Virtual Field Trips.

Here’s why:.

“I teach socioeconomically disadvantaged 9th graders who are 2 to 3 years behind in their reading and writing. Virtual Field Trips are the best way to give my students something to write about.

We do one each Monday and they love them! They always ask me, “Where are we going today?””

“My 6th grade students are always excited to learn through Virtual Field Trips. The videos are so engaging and informative.

I don’t have time to learn new technology, so I love how easy it is to use Virtual Field Trips!!!”

“Virtual Field Trips has been such a blessing to my students and me. The theme in my classroom is ‘travel.’ Thanks to VFT, the pandemic couldn’t stop us from having weekly field trips.

Our virtual field trips are the highlight of each student’s week. This was by far one of the best purchases I made this year.”

Teach your students something they'll never forget

virtual field trip middle school

Support each and every student.

Some students need a little extra help to learn well. Our interactive videos and activities help you overcome physical, cultural, and economic challenges, so no student is left behind.

virtual field trip middle school

Cover your social studies curriculum in less time.

We design each video and activity to help you meet social studies, geography, life science, and ancient civilization curriculum requirements in each U.S. state.

virtual field trip middle school

Grow your students into global citizens.

Take your students on unlimited educational field trips throughout North America, South America, Europe, Asia, and Africa.

“There are so many topics included in their library that we study in the Primary School that it is well worth buying into and the children were mesmerized from the moment they began watching. The images were bright and colourful while the commentaries very informative and clear, leading to a lot of discussion afterwards. I definitely recommend it.”

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virtual field trip middle school

Created by educators, for educators.

Hey, I’m Dale! I’m a traveler, educator, and parent of a special needs child. These three passions are why I founded Virtual Field Trips and created these videos for you to use in your classroom.

Visiting 40+ countries on six continents taught me the educational value of exposure to other places, cultures, people, wildlife, and landscapes. As an M.Ed. in Instructional Technology , I’m also passionate about serving other educators. And as a proud mom to a son with special needs , I understand the power of visual learning.

Virtual Field Trips and all its videos, quizzes, and activities are my way of helping you introduce your students to the marvels of the world around them, in a visual form that will engage and educate all your young learners.

It’s easy, it’s affordable, and, most importantly – it’ll help you teach your curriculum in the most fun & memorable way.

Become a member today! Your students will love you for it.

virtual field trip middle school

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virtual field trip middle school

Easy on your budget.

Just $45/yr for unlimited access to our entire video and resource library! We promise it’ll be the best $45 you invest in your students.

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Built for your curriculum.

We pack each video and worksheet with teaching that helps you meet your specific curriculum goals.

virtual field trip middle school

Overflowing with activities.

Each video includes printable worksheets and quizzes to help your students remember what they learned.

virtual field trip middle school

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We’ve translated our entire video and exercise library into Spanish. No student left behind!

virtual field trip middle school

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Help your students follow along and understand every word with closed captions.

virtual field trip middle school

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No annoying log-ins! Just send your students the link and they can watch on any device (even their phone).

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“My students love these virtual field trips and honestly can’t get enough of them. They ignite awesome writing.”

Mari, 1st Grade Teacher and Librarian in Toronto

Here's how it works:

virtual field trip middle school

Choose your membership.

Whether you need one video, a year’s worth of teaching, or a membership for your whole school, you can choose the membership that’s right for you.

virtual field trip middle school

Select your video.

Browse by grade, topic, or location and select the trip that fits your curriculum-specific needs.

virtual field trip middle school

Take your trip.

Show the video to your classroom, or send them a link to watch on their own time. Then, follow up with the video’s accompanying worksheets and quiz.

Here are more reasons why:

“ Thank you so much for providing such high-quality, informative, kid-level videos!  I am currently teaching government to my third graders and your video on how our government helps our communities is PERFECT! “

“ I just wanted to thank you for your beautifully filmed field trips and now the worksheets too! I take my students on a “remote” virtual field trip every Thursday and they absolutely love it. Its finally my chance to be Miss Frizzle from the Magic School Bus! The information is presented so clearly, and everything is so bright and eye catching. It has been a challenge finding appropriate field trips, without commercials, that will keep my students interested. You have provided exactly what I was looking for! !!!”

“ Yours is the FIRST website I have found since I started teaching 6th grade that is pitched perfectly to my kiddos! I GOTTA HAVE IT. “

You may be wondering…

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Can't I just use free YouTube videos?

What if i'm not good with technology, do your videos work with my curriculum.

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10 Smart Ideas for a Document Camera in Language Arts Class

The best teacher mask isn’t one-size-fits-all: this sampler pack can help, should the school day match the work day teachers weigh in, the truth about teachers’ summer vacation: #whatsummerbreak, 25 best travel games for kids and families, 16 butterfly books worth fluttering for, 5 improv games for any content area, setting up your literacy area to emphasize skills and content, help how do i handle students who are always slow to finish their work, best compression socks for teachers: top picks for comfort and support, take a virtual field trip to this stem fair featuring 30 amazing middle school students.

virtual field trip middle school

Introduction

Are you ready for an exciting adventure? Today, we invite you to join us on a virtual field trip to an extraordinary STEM Fair that showcases the brilliant talents and projects of 30 amazing middle school students! These young minds have spent months researching, developing, and perfecting their projects, so let’s dive in and explore their innovations!

The STEM Fair: A Showcase of Innovation

The STEM Fair is an annual event dedicated to encouraging middle school students to discover science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) by inspiring them to think critically and solve real-world problems. With more than 30 students participating in this year’s event, it’s clear that the future is bright for these up-and-coming minds.

Exploring the Projects

Let’s take a look at some of the fascinating projects these students have developed over the past few months:

1. Solar-Powered Water Purification System

Anna, a 7th-grade student, has designed a cost-effective solar-powered water purification system that can remove harmful contaminants from water sources. Her innovative project aims to provide clean drinking water for communities in developing countries.

2. Motion-Sensor Wildlife Camera

Max, an 8th-grade student who loves exploring nature, has built a motion-sensor wildlife camera using affordable materials. This camera would allow researchers to monitor wildlife populations without disturbing their natural habitat or spending excessive resources.

3. Biodegradable Plant-Based Plastics

Hailey, a curious 6th-grader, has developed biodegradable plastic products made from plant materials. Her project aims at reducing the pollution created by single-use plastics, paving the way for environmentally friendly disposables.

4. Robot-Assisted Physical Therapy

Tyler’s creation – an ingenious robot-assisted physical therapy device – promises to revolutionize rehabilitation for patients with motor impairments. This 8th-grader’s device strives to make patient-specific treatments more accessible and effective.

And those are just a few examples! The fair features many more extraordinary projects that span various STEM disciplines, such as programming, environmental science, chemistry, and material sciences.

Wrap-Up: A Virtual Round of Applause

As we conclude our virtual field trip, let’s take a moment to admire the hard work and dedication of these middle school students. Their creativity and determination highlight the importance of supporting STEM education – fostering a promising future for generations to come.

Be sure to follow developments in the world of STEM and encourage the young minds around you to participate in similar fairs. Who knows? You might just be nurturing the next Einstein or Tesla!

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virtual field trip middle school

Virtual field trips are an essential part of climate curriculum

Vr experiences can improve inclusion and boost diversity in stem by giving all students the opportunity to see climate science in action.

Key points:

  • Virtual field trips can help engage students in critical STEM education
  • 8 virtual field trips for STEM education
  • How to elevate climate literacy for future scientists
  • For more news on virtual field trips, visit eSN’s Digital Learning page

Climate change is an increasingly important subject in school curriculums. Today’s students will almost certainly inherit a climate-affected world and will need to understand the mechanisms of global warming if they are to grow into climate-conscious, civic-minded members of society.

However, many students are dissuaded from pursuing environmental science due to mundane textbooks and complex diagrams. This is a serious issue, as students will need an in-depth understanding of greenhouse gases and ecological damage in the future.

Educators can engage students and build excitement around environmental science using the latest virtual reality (VR) technology. This tech can even take students on virtual field trips, meaning they can virtually visit climate-affected areas from the safety and comfort of the classroom.

Building empathy

Educators can build interest in combating climate change and help kids understand the stakes by utilizing virtual reality headsets. These headsets can take them to climate-affected regions and bring them face-to-face with the Earth’s most fragile ecosystems . This can be a transformative experience that builds empathy with folks who live overseas and in areas most likely to be affected by climate change.

VR headsets can help students understand the stakes for other animals, too. Laura McGinty, a high school biology teacher in Seattle, learned this firsthand when she incorporated VR tech in her classroom. She found that students were moved by the “rich, real experience” that VR provides and finally understood that climate change was decimating penguin colonies and destroying ecosystems around the globe.

This sentiment is echoed by Mitchell Tartt, who heads the Conservation Science Division at the National Marine Sanctuaries. Tartt explains that few students will ever get the chance to scuba dive and see the devastation that climate change causes to coastlines and coral reefs. However, VR acts as a “phenomenally effective learning tool” that helps students connect with issues and ecosystems that they do not have a chance to encounter first-hand.

Climate change in the classroom

Climate change represents a meaningful threat to ecosystems around the world. However, any teacher who has addressed the issue in class knows that it can be a little dry. This is a real problem, as students need to be engaged in their learning if they are to understand the mechanism of climate change.

Virtual reality can spark interest in climate change and unleash the creativity of students by giving kids access to information in innovative ways. For example, educators who want to help students understand solutions to climate change can take their classroom on a virtual field trip to Boeing’s base in Seattle via the ecoAction Virtual Field Trip.

The ecoAction Virtual Field Trip gives students an opportunity to learn more about water use, resource preservation, and waste management without leaving the classroom. The ecoAction shows students possible career pathways in STEM, too, which may help traditionally underrepresented students imagine themselves in roles related to climate science.

When leveraged correctly, VR-driven climate field trips can help students understand how climate change will affect their day-to-day lives in the future, too. For example, teachers can use VR to simulate extreme weather conditions that affect drivers like snow, heatwaves, and flooding. This can give students practical experience with dangerous driving conditions such as lack of visibility from a blizzard whiteout scenario and may even save a life during a storm or heatwave.

Increasing STEM engagement

Virtual reality experiences can help kids become climate conscious and understand the mechanics behind global warming. This can meaningfully improve STEM engagement, as students who connect with STEM via VR and climate change are more likely to understand why the field is so important.

Virtual field trips can also increase inclusion and boost diversity in STEM. Virtual field trips that support the climate curriculum can help traditionally underserved students overcome common barriers to engagement like poor funding and inequity of opportunity. Teachers who bring VR into the classroom ensure that students are still able to learn from hands-on experiences without having to pay expensive travel fees.

Boosting diversity in STEM can minimize the risk of bias in coding algorithms, too. This is crucial, as many of tomorrow’s problems will be solved with a combination of human ingenuity and artificial intelligence. As such, minimizing the risk of bias should be a priority for STEM leaders who want to combat climate change with high-tech solutions.

Increasing diversity and boosting participation in STEM is particularly important today, as climate-literate communities will likely be more resilient than climate-illiterate areas. Communities that are climate-literate can prepare for the future by making collective efforts to minimize the impact of global warming. Teachers can easily boost climate literacy by using VR to:

  • Represent data in unique ways that help visual learners better understand the issue
  • Provide real-time updates to the class as the semester progresses
  • Bring the sights and sounds of climate-affected animals into the classroom using apps like iNaturalist

These VR-integrated pedagogical techniques give students hands-on experience with climate science and make lessons feel real. This can be particularly beneficial for students who struggle to engage with traditional STEM lessons. Real-time eco-system updates and visual experiences can help students connect with the lesson plan and will build excitement around the field of environmental science.

Looking ahead

Virtual field trips can help students become climate literate and improve engagement in STEM classrooms. This is critical today, as many of the challenges we face require an empathetic, informed approach to critical thinking and climate advocacy. VR experiences can improve inclusion and boost diversity in STEM, too, by ensuring that all students have the opportunity to see climate science in action.

virtual field trip middle school

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  1. Amazing & Informative Virtual Field Trips for Middle School

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  2. Tour the World with virtual field trip locations

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  3. One Stop Guide to Planning a Virtual Field Trip

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  4. 5 Advantages of Middle School Virtual Field Trips from Starts At Eight

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  5. Virtual Field Trips for Middle School

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  6. Virtual Field Trip

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COMMENTS

  1. Virtual Field Trips for Middle School

    What are Virtual Field Trips? Online visits give kids to chance to explore the world without leaving their homes or classrooms. It's a simulated excursion that often closely mirrors what they would learn if they were visiting a location in person.

  2. The Best Virtual Field Trips for the Classroom

    1. Amazon Career Tours Amazon Amazon Career Tours are free virtual field trips that inspire students to pursue careers of the future. Tour whenever, wherever on Kahoot! Each tour comes with a Teacher Toolkit that includes a facilitation guide and student worksheets.

  3. 6 Free Resources for Virtual Field Trips

    The term virtual field trip can be used to describe not just 360 degree photos and videos but also the live interactions and video conferences you might set up with a subject matter expert like an author or museum docent. Flipgrid (one of my favorite tools) hosts a handful of these types of virtual field trips. Our Edtech Newsletter Is Here

  4. The 22 Ultimate Virtual Field Trips & Tours for Students

    1. Take a trip to the zoo Whether it's live webcams of adorable pandas or behind-the-scenes tours with zookeepers, zoos all over the world offer ways for animal antics to delight and entertain your students. Some of our favorites include: Edinburgh Zoo's Panda Cam Georgia Aquarium's Beluga Whale Livestream

  5. Interactive Virtual Field Trips

    No permission slips required! These virtual events let educators take students to amazing places and give them remarkable experiences, without ever leaving the classroom. Join us for our Virtual Field Trips or watch them on-demand after their premieres.

  6. 25 virtual field trips for your classroom

    25 virtual field trips for your class. 1. Hidden World of National Parks. Part of Google Arts and Culture, The Hidden Worlds of National Parks tour takes 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.

  7. Virtual Field Trips for Kids: Worldwide Wonders

    K12 Education Home Virtual Field Trips for Kids: Worldwide Wonders Online adventures allow kids and their families to take safe field trips around the world from home. By Kristen...

  8. The 19 Best Free Virtual Field Trips of 2024

    47 The 19 Best Free Virtual Field Trips of 2023 Stuck at home? Travel virtually all over the world instead (but seriously, check out the Son Doong Cave) By S.E. Slack Updated on May 1, 2023 When you can't get away, your kids still can by taking a virtual field trip to a museum, farm, zoo, or another fun location.

  9. Virtual Field Trips

    Designed for ages 9-15 but customizable for all ages, virtual field trips allow students to travel the world and explore natural environments without leaving the classroom. Each virtual field trip contains a video, teacher guide and student activities. Minorities in Shark Sciences Education Hub Learn with Our Partners

  10. Engaging Virtual Field Trips for Middle School Science

    This list of virtual field trips for middle school science is full of interesting online tours you can use while teaching science at home. The field of science continues to grow, and it's crucial that older kids study a wide variety of science topics.

  11. Educational Virtual Field Trips for Middle School

    Virtual Field Trips for Middle School Science Expand your science lesson plans by visiting these sites that cover different science topics. African Wildlife Cams See all kinds of African animals, both day and night, with these wildlife cams located all across Africa. Clearwater Aquarium

  12. 60 Free Fun Virtual Field Trips For Your Classroom

    Virtual Field Trips allow students to navigate the world without leaving their seats or having to spend. These Free Virtual Field Trips, especially over the past few years when the world was closed, have been a game changer!

  13. Virtual Field Trip Discussion + Ideas

    Here's how to incorporate virtual field trips into your Middle School ELA Classroom. Time: 15 minutes or less for each one Rationale: Enhance speaking and listening skills while providing opportunities for authentic reading and writing both during and after any of the virtual tours. Make connections between text, world, and self based on similar locations,

  14. New Free, Virtual Field Trip For Middle School Students!

    9 1.7K views 2 years ago Vacation Tuesday is a new, free, weekly virtual field trip around the world for middle school students! This educational travel series designed to help teach...

  15. Virtual Field Trips

    Virtual Field Trips - Videos by Grade - Elementary & Middle School Videos By Grade Kindergarten Videos Grade 1 Videos Grade 2 Videos Grade 3 Videos Grade 4 Videos Grade 5 Videos Grade 6 Videos Grade 7 Videos Grade 8 Videos Grade 9 Videos Back to Videos Browse our selection of videos grade by grade.

  16. Virtual Field Trips

    Do you want to take your students on an exciting and educational adventure without leaving the classroom? Explore the world with Teachflix's virtual field trips, covering topics such as history, science, art, and culture. Find out how to access and use these interactive and engaging videos for your lessons.

  17. Best Virtual Field Trips

    - The Nature Conservancy's Nature Lab virtual field trips Designed for grades 5-8 but customizable for all ages, each virtual field trip contains a video, teacher guide, and student activities.

  18. Home_Page_2023

    Every teacher wants to be the one their students remember forever. E. But things like budget cuts and bigger classrooms stand between teachers and the education they want to give their students. E. Virtual Field Trips bridges the gap between your curriculum requirements and your resources so every teacher can give every student the memorable ...

  19. Access Middle School! Free, virtual field trips, exhibits, and camera

    This web tour allows you to head north, south, east, or west from your current position. You may also go to the Met, Bowling Green, Puppet House or other park favorites.

  20. Take a Virtual Field Trip to This STEM Fair Featuring 30 Amazing Middle

    Wrap-Up: A Virtual Round of Applause. As we conclude our virtual field trip, let's take a moment to admire the hard work and dedication of these middle school students. Their creativity and determination highlight the importance of supporting STEM education - fostering a promising future for generations to come.

  21. Virtual field trips are an essential part of climate curriculum

    Virtual field trips can also increase inclusion and boost diversity in STEM. Virtual field trips that support the climate curriculum can help traditionally underserved students overcome common barriers to engagement like poor funding and inequity of opportunity. Teachers who bring VR into the classroom ensure that students are still able to ...

  22. Adventure Club

    The Adventure Club was originally established in 1992 by families and school board members interested in providing a safe, enriching after school environment for their children. The program serves more than 200 children during a normal calendar year, or approximately 17% of Moscow's elementary students.

  23. AirPano Project

    AirPano is a VR project created by a team of Russian photographers focused on taking high-resolution aerial 360° photographs and 360° video. Today AirPano is the largest virtual travel resource in the world -- by geographical coverage, number of aerial photographs, and artistic and technical quality of the images — featuring 360° panoramas and 360° videos of the highest quality shot from ...

  24. About Ms. Bonzo

    A little background: My teaching career started in St. Augustine, Florida, after graduating from the University of South Alabama. Then, my husband and I lived, taught, and traveled overseas for almost a decade in Algeria, Singapore, and the Dominican Republic before coming to Idaho.We moved here in 1994 with our daughter and have really enjoyed ...

  25. Moscow Kremlin: Outdoor Walking Live Virtual Tour

    Send your Live Virtual Tour booking link to up to 10 friends, and explore Moscow together. Keep exploring the world with a local guide…from the safety of home! Enjoy fully private, real-time virtual tours with a local guide sharing their knowledge of history, cooking, culture and more! Visit a place you've always dreamed of, or re-visit an ...