If you’re looking to ensure your children are fully engaged with their work or a specific project, then Google Expeditions is definitely an app you need.
What The Children Do:
The children are given an iPad and select an expedition to join – an expedition which you will be fully in control of. Once they’ve joined the expedition, the screen will fill up with a large image (perhaps a scene under the ocean or a misty rain forest) and the children can then move the iPad around side-to-side, upwards and downwards, and explore the area they’re looking at.
It’s like dropping a movable camera into the middle of a jungle or on top of a mountain.
This is a great way to encourage the children to explore and engage with different subjects. You could use the jungle based expeditions to enhance a setting description or take a journey through the entire digestive system during a science lesson. Bringing virtual reality technology into your classroom will boost student engagement and you will definitely see an improvement in their work.
How It Works:
As a teacher, all you need to do is open the app and select “leader”. Once you’ve done that, you just simply select an expedition from a list and the children then click “join” on their iPads. It’s remarkably simple considering it’s such advanced technology.
You can also press “pause” on your iPad to pause their screen which will ensure all children have to stop and listen to you. Each expedition also contains information about that location which your children can use as discussion points. Finally, if you want the children to look at a specific location, you simply have to press and hold that section of the photograph (on your iPad) and an arrow will appear on the children’s iPads telling them where to look.
Why It’s Good:
The simple fact that you can bring virtual reality into your classroom is a huge benefit of using this app straight away. It truly brings different subjects to life and can create a WOW factor in any lesson – I’ve honestly never seen the children so engaged as when they were using this equipment.
Add to this, the fact that it’s so easy to use and is so accessible for children of all ages and I think it would be difficult to think of a reason not to have this on an iPad in your school. Being able to pause the activity by pressing a single button is also a great way to manage behaviour in the lesson and ensures that you can generate discussion about what the children are looking at whenever your want.
I just want to note that you can book Google to come into your school and run an activity session or activity day using the virtual reality software for free. Following this link; Google Expeditions, will take you to the page you need to visit.