Friday, June 24, 2011

Article #3 Making Field Trips Podtastic

Making Field Trips Podtastic
This article is trying to explain to educators a new way to use technology in and out of the classroom. They are persuading teachers to use hand held computers and mp3 players as pod casts during class, field trips, and after school programs. Already at museums, and other places there are virtual tours and field trips that can be taken on computers, and hand held computers. This allows the student to take pictures, find articles, and answer interactive questions about any subject. This technology can open up so many avenues for educators to engage their students on a level that is entertaining and educational. " Beyond the advantages of customizing the learning experience for students, the hand held field trip supports several national standards too." (weller)
I could see myself using this kind of technology in my p.e. classroom. To tell the truth I had to think about it a lot. I was wondering how and what kind of field trips does a p.e. class take? Then I thought about setting up a field trip to a stadium of a sport that we are learning. Having them virtually go to a stadium and talk to individuals there, those individuals would ask them questions that are related to that sport. They can talk to the players and learn some plays. Answering questions that are specific to game strategies, scoring, and rules. I thought that would be interesting for a group of students do together on a computer. For tennis they could go to England and watch Wimbledon. Golf they could go to Pebble Beach. This would work for any sport. I think that it would be a great way to change up a p.e. class for a day. This way of teaching p.e. would include those kids that do not really enjoy the psychical side of p.e. They could still learn multiple sports and see what interest them in each sport, even if they don't enjoy playing it.
" The power of this model is in its simplicity, therefore, its flexibility. (Weller) The model of virtual tours, and interactive learning is designed to be simple. The school provides the hand-held computer and then provides the software for each lesson. The students have prior technological experience and will pick this up quickly. This also allows them to be creative and innovative. "The design of a field trip model of this type requires a lot more initial effort on the educators, but one that pays large dividends. (Weller) This model as been proven to work by Harvard University Technology and Innovation and Education program. "This does work, and the student really enjoy it." (Weller)
The way that this model is set up, and the freedom that it given to the students makes sure that it covers all six net-s standards. It is creative, safe, innovating. Leads students into developing a knack for technology. It prepares students to be able to use technology as a asset in the future occupations.

Reference: Weller, Aliece M., John C. Bickar, and Paul McGuiness. Making Field Trips Podtastic. ISTE, 2008. Web. 24 June 2011.


  1. I agree that the experience of virtual field trips could be both engaging and educational. One of my articles also discussed the benefits of virtual field trips. I like your idea of having your students take a virtual field trip to a stadium, Pebble Beach, or to Wimbledon. Getting students interested in and excited about sports is important especially in a society where child obesity is a serious problem. Field trips are used to engage students in all kinds of topics, so why not use it to engage students in sports?

    At first I was wondering why the author recommended hand held devices specifically. However, after thinking about it, I realized that hand held devices are more convenient and portable. As a physical education teacher, who may not have a classroom with computers, hand held computers would be much easier for your students to use. My school does not have hand held devices (yet), but we do have a computer lab. I wonder if the P.E. teacher at my school has ever considered taking the students in the computer lab on a rainy day to take a virtual field trip to a sport location or watch a video about an athlete. Thanks for the idea. I will have to mention it to him.

    Lynne Dudas

  2. I thought that this was a very informative article. I like the idea of every student being able to have a hand held computer that will keep them engaged in the material. However, I wonder if it will become a distraction in class if students have access to all of this in their hand. For example, students in my college class have laptops out and they spend the entire three our session on facebook, computer games, etc. If college students are doing this, what will middle school students and high school students be doing? Another example I can give is my mom's class had a class set of laptops and they were setting up to use it and students were doing everything other than the work. Students were taking apart the laptops, others did not know what to do, and the rest were on facebook, etc. The wireless program was not good enough to allow all the students to access the website at the same time. So, it would have cost even more money to get a new wireless system. Although, this is just one example, an incident like this would turn me away from wanting to use hand held devices or computers.

    I do like your idea of applying virtual tours into a PE class. I was thinking if you did virtual tours with stadiums, maybe the school could do a partnership with the teams that play in that stadium and try and get some extra funding for the technology in the school. So, that is a really great idea. I liked Lynne's idea about being able to use a program like this on a rainy day when all other options are unavailable. Also, I agree with your last statement that technology like this will prepare students for the future and future occupations.

    - Michael Corle

  3. I think the idea of virtual fieldtrips is a great subsitute for those school that can't afford the real thing. It allows a child to still communicate while seeing. These students will be able to put aside the physical aspect of PE and really just learn and deepen their interest in sports or other physical activities they may like. I don't neccessarily feel this is the best way for a student to experience a sport becauseI think a sport is so much more than just seeing. I know for myself I have to do. I need to stimulate more than my eyes to really know what a sport is like. For example, I love to ride motocross. Its not the same to watch professional riders on the internet as it is to be at the race up close and personal. To hear and feel the rumble of all of the bikes rev up. Being able to smell the race gas. However, these types of field trips arent always affordable or safe. So in that sense I do agree that a virtual fieldtrip would be the next best thing.

  4. I like the discussion here. You guys really put some interesting thoughts on virtual field trips using hand-held technology. I just want to share an experience. I saw a lot of baseball games on TV, but I had not seen a live professional game until college. My first impression was: The baseball field was smaller than it appeared on the TV screen. The second thing I learned was that it's more fun to watch a game with tens of thousands of fans. I guess the video technology had mediated my experience in learning about the sport. In general, what aspects of human experience can be enhanced by such technology? What other aspects can be limited by technology?