24 End of the Year Virtual Field Trips- for Free!

24 End of the Year Virtual Field Trips- for Free!

Our Education Blogger is a public school teacher with over a decade of experience. She’s an active NEA member and enjoys writing about her experiences in the classroom.

Virtual field trips allow students and teachers to go beyond the classroom, and even their own country and planet, to experience a variety of adventures all from the convenience of their seats at school.

They are a great end-of-the-year activity to help students have fun and really engage with their classmates. You can develop lesson plans and activities to complement your “trip”.

Here are some fun, educational, and free field trips to take with your class this May.

 

 

virtual field trips

 

Museums

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History Virtual Tour

This comprehensive virtual tour presentation allows visitors using a desktop computer (Windows, Mac, Linux) or a mobile device (iPhone, iPad, Android) to take virtual, self-guided, room-by-room tours of select exhibits and other areas within the natural history museum building as well as select research and collections areas at our satellite support and research stations and even past exhibits no longer on display.

 

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

The Museum’s collections database contains more than 270,000 records, including photos and albums—Images of life before, during, and after the Holocaust; Personal stories—Interviews, home movies, memoirs, and diaries; films—historical footage and contemporary films about the Holocaust.

 

National WWII Museum

The Online Learning Series allows an unprecedented look into the Museum’s collection for those WWII enthusiasts the Museum can’t always reach in person.

 

The Louvre

Visit the museum’s exhibition rooms and galleries, and contemplate the façades of the Louvre.

 

The Van Gogh Museum

The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam houses the largest collection of artworks by Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) in the world. The permanent collection includes over 200 paintings by Vincent van Gogh, 500 drawings, and more than 750 letters. Discover his work, read stories, walk the museum, and more.

 

Virtual Colonial Williamsburg

Immerse yourself in an interactive 3D model of Virginia’s 18th-century capital. The project integrates architectural, archaeological, and historical information, presenting the city as it has not been seen in more than 200 years.

 

 

virtual field trips

 

Go On A Journey

Reach The World

Since 2009, 930 travelers have shared their journeys online with more than 17,000 youth in the U.S., publishing more than 16,000 first-person travelogues in the process. By using technology to enable youth to form relationships with global travelers, RTW is sparking a process of personal development that can truly be described as “reaching” the world!

 

National Aquarium

Visit the famous, Baltimore aquarium where kids can have fun learning while exploring different regions, like the tropics and the tundra.

 

Seattle Aquarium

Take a tour of the wonderful Seattle Aquarium, watch live webcams and videos, download animal infographics, factsheets, and more!

 

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Experience the wonder of the ocean wherever you are with 10 live webcams including penguins, spider crabs, jellyfish, and sharks. Read animal stories, learn about their habitats, and more.

 

San Diego Zoo

The San Diego Zoo has ten live cams to choose from! The zoo also has a website for kids that is full of videos, activities, stories, and games!

 

Smithsonian’s National Zoo

See giant pandas, elephants, lions, and naked mole rats on animal cams streaming live, 24/7 from the Smithsonian’s National Zoo and Conservation Biology Institute. Enjoy free webinars on their website AND download Animal Cam Bingo Cards.

 

National Parks

Take a trip to a national park from wherever you are! Many national park sites across the country offer digital tours and experiences that you can access anytime, anywhere. From digitally diving under the sea to watching webcams of the cherry blossom trees bloom, there are countless ways to enjoy a park experience online.

 

 

virtual field trips

 

World Destinations

New York City and Ellis Island

Take a virtual tour of one of the most famous cities in the world, and explore its top tourist destinations like Madison Square Garden and the Empire State Building. And then head on over to Ellis Island and take their “Coming to America” virtual tour.

 

Goodrich Castle

Located near the Anglo-Welsh border, Goodrich Castle is one of the finest and best-preserved of all English medieval castles. Take a virtual tour of the castle, learn its ownership and siege history, what life was like in a medieval household, and more.

 

Buckingham Palace

Explore this magnificent building via virtual tours. The first tour will take you to the Grand Staircase. Click on the small images below to access further tours of the White Drawing Room, the Throne Room, and the Blue Drawing Room. And then scroll to the bottom to read about the events, residents of the palace, and more.

 

The Great Wall of China

From the sea to the desert, walk the Great Wall of China, read about its history, and uncover secret stamps within its bricks!

 

The Pyramids of Egypt

Take a 360-degree virtual reality tour of the Egyptian Pyramids and then brush up on your history with Smithsonian Journeys: Ancient Egypt and the Nile

 

Rome & the Colosseum

Take a journey around the iconic sights of Rome with this virtual tour of the historical centre and the Colosseum.

 

The Eiffel Tower

The best panoramic views from the Eiffel Tower, both day and night. The mobile guide lets you admire Paris as if you were on the 2nd floor, or at the Tower’s summit. Scan the horizon to the right or left, activate night mode, and zoom in to see Notre Dame Cathedral, Place de la Concorde, the Hôtel des Invalides, and many other Parisian monuments. You can even click the description at the bottom to learn more about what you are seeing.

 

 

virtual field trips

 

& More!

National Geographic Education

National Geographic Education brings geography, social studies, and science to life. Using real-world examples and National Geographic’s rich media, educators, families, and students learn about the world and the people in it.

 

Google Arts and Culture Street View and Google Arts and Culture Places

Tour famous sites and landmarks around the world.

 

AirPano

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

 

Your students can also explore Disney World with our fun Virtual Tour of Disney World rides!

Happy “touring” 😉

 

This article is furnished by California Casualty, providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters, and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.

7 Ways to Save with a Teen Driver

7 Ways to Save with a Teen Driver

A new driver in the household can really impact your auto insurance rates. This is because teen drivers ages 16 -19 are more likely to be involved in accidents than any other age group. If you’re the parent of a teen who just got their license, learning how you can save on your auto insurance is a necessity.

Here are 7 ways you can control your car insurance premiums and get discounts with a teen driver.

1. Shop for coverage with free quotes

Whether you stick with your current auto insurance carrier or you plan to shop around, make sure that you go with an insurance company that will quote your new driver for free and let you know upfront any benefits or discounts that you may be eligible for.

 

2. Enroll them in a driver safety education course

Most insurers will reward teenage drivers who complete a driver’s education or safety course with a discount. By passing the course your teen can prove they have the knowledge and skills behind the wheel to avoid an accident.

 

3. Take advantage of good student discounts

Good grades don’t only help your teen out in the classroom, they can also qualify for a ‘good student discount’ with your auto insurance provider. Talk to your insurance agent to see how much you can save by turning in your child’s report card.

 

4. Purchase a reliable vehicle with a good safety rating

We all know that the costs of our vehicles directly influence what we will pay for auto insurance. Before you go car shopping with your teen talk to your insurance agent and see how much it would be to insure a newer car vs. an older car. Don’t forget to ask about any discounts or rewards for safety ratings or features like airbags, anti-lock brakes, seatbelt alarms, and power steering.

 

5. Limit the miles they drive

Miles driven can also affect the cost of your insurance. This is because the longer you are on the road, the more likely you are to have an accident. So, one of the best ways to avoid a rate increase is to keep mileage to a minimum. Limit your teens driving to work, school, and only in-town functions and you may qualify for low-mileage discounts.

 

6. Bundle your protection and save

Instead of getting your teen their own suit insurance policy, you can save by adding them to your existing policy. And you can save even more each month with the ‘insurance bundle discount’- when you add your auto insurance policy onto other policies that you have with your carrier, like your homeowner’s insurance or renter’s insurance policy.

 

7. Drive SAFE!

The best way to save money (and stress) is to teach and emphasize the importance of safe driving. It will not only prevent a costly accident, but it will give you peace of mind, as a parent, that your new driver is doing everything they can to stay safe on the road.

 

There’s no greater value than knowing your family is properly protected while saving money.

Did you know that California Casualty has some of the best teen driver rates in the industry, without skimping on protection or cutting any corners? Check your rate today by contacting a CalCas insurance agent at 1.866.704.8614 or get a free quote online at mycalcas.com/quote.

 

This article is furnished by California Casualty, providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters, and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.

Top 10 Car Seat Safety Mistakes

Top 10 Car Seat Safety Mistakes

Vehicle accidents are the number one cause of death for children between the ages 1 and 4. Your child’s best chance to come out of an accident unscathed is if they are in a car seat that has been installed correctly.

Here are the top car seat safety mistakes.

Price isn’t Everything, Especially when it comes to safety.  When it comes to purchasing car seats, the more expensive doesn’t necessarily mean “safer”. There are car seats for every budget. A lot of that extra cost could just be additional features, easy to use, or brand popularity.  Find compare and rate car seats using the  NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) car seat finder here. So what’s the determining factor on which seat to get? Get the one that has the best rating that fits your budget, vehicle, can be properly installed and used.

Your Child is Too Big for the Seat.  You bring your new bundle of joy home in the infant seat, they grow quickly, when do you move up to the next size. Sometimes it might be easy to judge if they outgrow the seat. When they pass the height or weight limits you will need to change seats to accommodate these new changes. You can check the manufacturer’s site for specifics on whether your car seat is still a good fit. Or follow this guide.

Moving to a forward-facing or booster seat too soon.  The AAP policy says it’s best to keep kids rear-facing until they turn 2 or meet the maximum height and weight for the seat. Studies say that children under 2 are less likely to be severely injured (or worse) if they are riding rear-facing. Newer car seats are equipped with higher height and weight limits to help encourage rear-facing.  But, just because the child meets the minimum weight requirement for a booster seat does not mean they are ready to move up. It comes down to if they can sit correctly in the seat and maintain proper belt positions at all times.

More is not merrier in this case.  Do not use both LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) and the safety belt, use the incorrect LATCH anchors, or use a LATCH past its weight limit. What you need to use will depend on your car and the type of seat. One or the other may be the best option, but you shouldn’t need to use both. Double-check your car seat manual to make sure you’re using the correct anchors. You should also note that the lower anchors have weight limits, so you have to switch to vehicle seat belt installation if/when the weight your child + car seat exceeds 65lbs.

Used Seat = Better Deal.  Expiration dates, prior accidents, cleanliness- there are all sorts of reasons why to purchase a new seat instead of buying a used one. If you are tight on money, research and see which local organizations offer inexpensive options. You’re carrying precious cargo remember, don’t skip the small stuff!

Taking kids out of car seats too soon.  When does a child get to ride like a normal passenger? Great question!  When the child can sit all the way back with knees bent over the edge of the seat with their seatbelt properly across the shoulder and the thighs. They need to be able to maintain this position throughout the ride, even if asleep. Check your state requirements, most require the use of a booster through age 8 or 9 (or once they hit a certain height or weight requirement).

Incorrect use of the chest clip.  Don’t brush this piece off. It’s actually a crucial feature to the seat, that could end up saving your child’s life. The clip holds the straps so that if an accident happens, the straps will remain secure on the child’s shoulders, allowing full protection from the seat. A clip in the wrong spot could result in ejection, internal injuries, or even death. 

Straps need to be snug.  One rule to remember: if you can pinch excess strap between your fingers, or if the straps are twisted or gaping, they are too loose. The child’s clothes should never be buckled in while wearing them. You may think it adds “padding” but in an accident, it will compress and leave space that could cause injury.

Wrong harness slot.  The manual for the car seat will be specific to your exact seat, but usually, placement depends on the direction the seat is facing. Rear-facing: straps should thread into harness slot at or below the shoulders. Forward-facing: straps should thread into harness slot at or above the shoulders.

It’s ONLY a car seat.  Car accidents are the leading cause of death for children. Car seats save lives.

Take the time to properly install your car seat before use and have it inspected by a certified technician for assurance.

Again, your child is precious cargo, take precautionary measures now before you could regret it later.

 

This article is furnished by California Casualty, providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters, and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.

Top 6 Websites Offering Free Leveled Reading Passages

Top 6 Websites Offering Free Leveled Reading Passages

Our Education Blogger is a public school teacher with over a decade of experience. She’s an active NEA member and enjoys writing about her experiences in the classroom.

Struggling to find quality, leveled reading passages for your students? Look no further! We’re sharing our favorite websites that offer free, high-quality, leveled reading passages. language arts

reading skills

Top 6 Websites Offering Free Leveled Reading Passages

 

CommonLit.org

CommonLit delivers high-quality, free instructional materials to support literacy development for students in grades 5-12. Our resources are flexible, research-based, aligned to the Common Core State Standards, created by teachers for teachers. We believe in the transformative power of a great text, and a great question.

ReadWorks.org

The nonprofit ReadWorks provides K-12 teachers with what to teach and how to teach it—online, for free, to be shared broadly. We provide the largest, highest-quality library of curated nonfiction and literary articles in the country, along with reading comprehension and vocabulary lessons, formative assessments, and teacher guidance. Most importantly, everything ReadWorks does is based on proven cognitive science research, not unproven academic theory.

ReadingVine.com

Free grade leveled reading passages for use in the classroom or at home. Filter by genre, grade, topic, skill, and more.

K5Learning.com

Free reading comprehension worksheets for grades 1-5. Use these free, printable worksheets to practice and improve reading comprehension, vocabulary and writing. Each reading passage is followed by exercises which for younger students focus on recalling information directly from the text and for older students focus on prediction, inference and character traits.

LearnZillion.com

Browse 5-day close reading modules, as well as text-based reading and writing skill videos, for free!

TweenTribune.com

A free teacher tool from Smithsonian Teacher, offering daily AP news articles, Lexile® leveled for K-12, self-scoring quizzes customized by Lexile® level, critical thinking questions, student commenting, Espanol AP articles, weekly lesson plans, weekly video, and weekend “Monday Morning Ready” newsletter as prep for the week ahead.

 

Have a reading passage, but aren’t sure what its Lexile level is? Try Lexile Analyzer to evaluate any passage. Registered educators (it’s free for you!) have a 1,000-word limit.

 

We’d love to hear from you! In the comment section below, let us know your favorite sites to find leveled reading passages

 

This article is furnished by California Casualty, providing auto and home insurance to educators, law enforcement officers, firefighters, and nurses. Get a quote at 1.866.704.8614 or www.calcas.com.

 

 

Surviving Extreme Heat, Heat Exhaustion, & More

Surviving Extreme Heat, Heat Exhaustion, & More

It’s summertime and temperatures are quickly on the rise!

Extreme heat is more than an inconvenience though; it is a health hazard. It’s extremely important that we do all that we can to avoid overheating and that we all know the symptoms of heat-related illnesses like:

Heat Cramps

These are muscular pain or spasms in the leg or abdomen – often the first sign of trouble. Getting a person to a cooler place and hydrating them with water or sports drinks usually alleviates them.

 

Heat Exhaustion

This is much more severe with symptoms of:

    • Cool moist pale, ashen or flushed skin
    • Headache
    • Dizziness
    • Nausea
    • Weakness
    • Exhaustion

Treatment includes moving to a cooler place with circulating air, remove or loosen clothing and apply cool, wet cloths or towels to the skin. Spraying a person with water helps as well as giving small amounts of fluids such as water, fruit juice, milk or sports drinks. If symptoms persist, call medical help immediately

 

Heat Stroke

This is a life-threatening condition. Symptoms include high body temperature (above 103 degrees); hot, red skin; rapid and strong pulse; confusion, and possible unconsciousness. Immediately:

    • Call 911
    • Move the person to a cooler place
    • Cool them with water by immersing them or spraying them
    • Cover them with ice packs or bags of ice

Children and Pets are at Risk

Don’t forget your precious cargo when the weather heats up. We think that it will never happen to our families, unfortunately, each year an average of 37 children and many hundreds of pets die from being left in hot cars. The majority is the result of a parent or caregiver who forgot the child or pet was in the vehicle. Even on a 70-degree day, the inside temperature can climb to a dangerous 110 degrees.

New technology and apps are being developed to warn parents of a child left in a car or truck, and the 2017 GMC Acadia will be the first vehicle with a built-in sensor that alerts drivers to check the back seat for children or pets left in the car. Until these are tested and more readily available, safety groups have mounted campaigns to prevent child heatstroke danger with these warning tips:

    • Never leave a child or pet in an unattended vehicle
    • Keep vehicles locked so children can’t climb in
    • Always check the back seat before leaving the vehicle
    • Place a stuffed toy in the car seat when it’s unoccupied and move it to the front seat as a visible reminder when you put a child in the seat
    • Put a purse, briefcase or other important items in the back seat with your infant or young child
    • Alert childcare facilities to notify you if your child fails to show up
    • Call 911 if you see a child alone in a vehicle and take action if you see they are in distress or unresponsive (break a window and remove them to a cool place and wait for emergency responders)

Personal Safety

When extremely hot weather hits, these are things you can do to alleviate the danger:

    • Drink plenty of water and rehydrating sports drinks
    • Avoid strenuous work during the heat of the day
    • Dress in loose-fitting, lightweight and light-colored clothing
    • Stay indoors as much as possible
    • Never leave children or pets in a vehicle
    • Go to a basement or lowest floor of a house or building if there is no air conditioning
    • Consider spending the warmest part of the day in cool public buildings such as libraries, schools, movie theaters, malls, and other community facilities
    • Spend time at a community pool or water park
    • Check on family, friends, and neighbors (especially the very young or old) who do not have air conditioning

Home Prep

Ready.gov has an extensive list of recommendations to help keep your home cool when the temperature rises:

    • Install window air conditioners snugly and insulate them
    • Check air conditioning ducts for proper insulation
    • Install temporary window reflectors (such as aluminum foil-covered cardboard) to reflect heat back outside
    • Cover windows that receive direct sunlight with drapes, shades, awnings or louvers
    • Keep storm windows up

Automobile Prep

Your car takes a beating in extreme heat. It’s a good reminder to:

    • Test your battery
    • Check your fluids – oil, coolant, and wiper fluid
    • Get your air conditioning serviced
    • Inspect all hoses and belts for cracks or tears
    • Carry extra water or coolant

 

 

This article is furnished by California Casualty, providing auto and home insurance to teachers, law enforcement officers, firefighters, and nurses. Get a quote at 1.800.800.9410 or www.calcas.com.

Pin It on Pinterest