AMNH Launches Virtual Field Trips Amid Social Distancing
The launch comes as Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced that New York City is working with private partners, libraries, and museums to create online resources that will keep students engaged throughout the remainder of the remote school year.
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There are currently three Virtual Field Trip modules that have been launched, according to the press release. The first module, a field trip to the Museum’s Bernard Family Hall of North American Mammals, geared to third-fifth grades, allows students to explore historic habitat dioramas to learn about animal adaptations in their environment. The second module, a virtual visit to the Gottesman Hall of Planet Earth, is geared to middle schoolers. This module focuses on teaching how plate tectonics can explain Earth formations such as ocean basins and continents. The third module, a field trip to the Butterfly Conservatory, is designed for students in grades K-2 to observe butterflies and compare their patterns.
The museum typically receives 5 million visits annually, though it’s currently closed due to COVID-19, and it’s used to using massive open online courses (MOOCs), mobile apps, and websites to reach global audiences. It is now utilizing sites such as OLogy, Khan Academy, and Kahoot to maintain an engaging at-home learning experience for students.
In addition to the newly offered Virtual Field Trips on Google Arts and Culture, the museum plans to host live virtual programs covering a wide range of topics, from deep ocean biology to planetary science. Live pre-recorded tours will also be posted on Facebook. Audiences can stay connected with AMNH on the museum’s website, amnh.org/explore.