Google Earth, Maps, and most importantly CARDBOARD!!!!
Okay, so when I get a thought in my head I am all in and it becomes a passion. This week my passion was immersive geography. In our Language Arts classes we are reading a fabulous book called The Years of Zero by Seng Ty.
It is a wonderful story about life in Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge and was written by a guidance counselor in my district. About 20% of the students in my district are Cambodian so this book is an important memoir for us. Many of the parents, of my students, grew up in refugee camps in Thailand so the families never go back to Cambodia.
I wanted them to see the natural beauty of that country so first I created a Google Earth field trip. I then decided that I was going to test the field on ancient Mesopotamia since we were launching that unit in class. It was wonderful! I used Google Earth, Google Maps and Google Cardboard to tour Iraq. As students were on their field trip they had to take notes on what their senses might experience. The culmination was creating a sensory poem.
They love it all but the definitely love Google Cardboard the most!
We went to the Grand Bazaar in Turkey, Baghdad, the Tigris River, and then we threw in the Eiffel Tower, Great Barrier Reef, and Macchu Pichu because they are AMAZING in Google Cardboard.
If you haven't used Google Cardboard yet, it is a game changer! All you need is a smartphone, one of these...
and some fabulous apps like Cardboard and Google Street View. The box allows your students to feel like they are immersed in the environment! My kiddos loved it sooooooo much they now have a list of places we need to "visit".
If you are interested in the above field trip, click here for the resources! I will also put them on my Freebie page.