Posts about Field Trips

February 23, 2016

Virtual Reality & BASIS Independent: Our Visit with Google's Expeditions Pioneer Program

We gladly bring you a post from our sister school, BASIS Independent Brooklyn, that recently enjoyed virtual reality technology in their classrooms. Keep reading for more on their "virtual field trips." Curious about actual field trips? Be sure to check out our post on their visit to the Museum of Natural History. 

We're lucky to be surrounded by such cultural richness in New York City; it sure does afford us some exciting field trip opportunities. Nevertheless, our teachers often wish they could snap their fingers and walk through the Amazon with their students to bring to life the different ecosystems they study in science, or actually visit the famous Chinese landmarks they often talk about in Mandarin.

Thanks to the Google Expeditions Pioneer Program, a virtual reality (VR) technology offering "guided tours of places buses can't go," teachers don't necessarily snap their fingers to walk through the Amazon, but rather snap a few pieces of cardboard in place to create a viewfinder around a simple virtual reality device to go literally quite anywhere in the world.

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January 8, 2016

Learning by Exploration: Field Trips, BASIS Independent Style

With so many opportunities for hands-on, in-the-field learning in the Bay Area, our students will certainly venture outside of the classroom for some of their lessons to bring to life our accelerated, liberal arts, STEM-focused course of study. 

We are happy to share with you an example of what field trips at BASIS Independent Fremont could look like via the recent adventures of our students in the big apple. Second graders at our sister school in Brooklyn recently went on a full-day immersive trip at a New York City icon: The American Museum of Natural History.

One of our administrators sat with 2nd grade Learning Expert Teacher, Ms. Erika Brinzac, who spearheaded the field trip and actually works part time at the museum, to talk about the experience:

"I felt it was important to go deeper with the science curriculum and add to it. Science is what defines everything so I wanted to bring it to life. We've been learning about vertebrates and invertebrates for a little while now, so it was important for them to see physically and have an emotional reaction to exploring what they're studying. Given the material, it was a great opportunity for that!"

"We explored the rainforest, butterflies, space, dinosaurs, and went to the special exhibit called 'Life at the Limits' which is all about animals that have adaptations that help them survive, like water bears and hammerhead sharks."

"I loved incorporating every subject into the day. It was a full day trip so we wanted to incorporate every subject to make this trip as enhancing as possible. We directed their experience with 'exploration' sheets. We had a scavenger hunt for animals in the rainforest in Mandarin, we drew the butterflies we saw, we sang a song about insects (which seems to have stuck around for way longer than I intended)."

"They got so into it. We did a writing piece about our favorite parts off the exhibit, we incorporated math by weighing ourselves on different celestial bodies and then ordered the bodies by least gravitational pull to most gravitational pull. We even played spider tag to get some exercise in. We sat outside and ate lunch, it was a beautiful day. It was overall a great experience and a nice change of structure of the day for students."

What did the students have to say about the trip? Here is Sanvi's take:

As I wrapped up my conversation with Ms. Brinzac, she shared with me that for some students this trip was their first time exploring this New York City landmark. We're honored to have helped create what is meant to be a wonderful memory for our growing minds!

Curious to learn more about the 2nd grade? Visit us at an upcoming event!

We can't wait to see what is in store for students at BASIS Independent Fremont! Learn more at an upcoming Information Session or apply now for Fall 2016.

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Inspired by the blissful feeling of uncovering connections, our blog Eureka! Fremont is about sharing moments that capture the essence of what it is to be a BASIS Independent student, teacher, administrator, or family.

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