Friday, 20 January 2017

Virtual Field Trips and Genius Hour

This week in 8Y24, we explored the world of Virtual Field Trips! VFT’s are a great way to “take” your class on an adventure that would not be feasible in the real world, such as a tour around a European museum, an African safari, or even the local farm. These online tours span everything from photo tours to immersive experiences complete with video, audio, and interactive segments. I chose to explore “The Nine Planets”, an online and informative way to explore everything about our solar system. My field trip included an informative article about Jupiter, a chance to check out stunning astronomy photography, and finished with the “Express” version of the Tour of the Solar System. I had never really heard of or experienced a Virtual Field Trip before; I think they are great tools for teachers who want to take their class to exotic or memorable locations around the world, and VFT’s provide great opportunities to engage in learning that wouldn’t happen without the use of technology.

We also furthered our knowledge of the “Genius Hour Project”, an initiative started in part by Google that encourages people to spend their time pursuing and expanding on their knowledge of a topic they are passionate about. Productivity and motivation increase when people are supported in following their “pet projects” and interests; this is where Gmail and Google News originated from! Genius Hour is also used in the classroom, where students can choose any topic from which to develop a project.

In 8Y24, we are starting our own Genius Hour Projects! I chose to research the question “How can I improve my health and nutrition on a vegetarian diet?” I challenged myself to try vegetarianism last year for a couple of months as an experiment, and ended up really liking it. Now that I'm more committed, I'm interested in exploring new foods, recipes, and tricks for making sure I am getting the right amount of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. After choosing this topic, I went home and kicked off my planning for this project with a healthy smoothie!

It had cashew milk, pomegranate, avocado, blueberries, banana, and kale.

Check out the additional pages on this blog, like my proposal page, to find out more about my Genius Hour project!

Until next time. :)

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