Hello, my name is Debra Morris. I would like to welcome our Board of Directors. I hope that this presentation will give you a greater understanding of the need and use of Virtual Field Trips within our school system.
Let’s start with defining what a Virtual Field Trip is. Simply stated, virtual field trips are guided explorations through the use of the web. Through the use of Virtual Field Trips, a teacher can take her students just about anywhere in the world. Also, through the use of this technology, a student confined to homebound services can become an active participant in their classroom each day.
Virtual field trips originated in 1995. They were not widely used until around 2000.
Why does our school system need to explore the use of Virtual Field Trips? We have experienced a severe economic crisis over the past two years. You are all aware of our budget cuts implemented over these two years and the current ones we are being forced to implement. Our school budget has totally eliminated our field trip experiences for some grades and has limited others to in town field trips. Even if our budgets had not been cut, realistically we can say it is not feasible to travel to another country or state in the time length given in a school day. We are also not able to travel and explore the places a virtual field trip allows you to. For example: a visit inside a cell, meet an author face to face, and visit another classroom in Japan.
I would like to address the importance of Virtual Field Trips by addressing our top priority for our school system, which is advancing our achievement scores. Recent research was completed on approximately 400 7th and 8th graders. These students were from two Maryland public Middle Schools. One school was an urban school and the other was a rural school. The study was conducted during the 2003-2004 school year. The evaluation was conducted by ORC Marco, a Maryland consulting firm, as part of a “Ready to Teach” grant awarded to MPT by the U.S. Department of Education. Results showed a statistically significant difference in reading comprehension between the control group and the treatment group. Specifically the study showed that middle school students who used the online field trips scored higher on national standardized reading comprehension tests than those who used traditional learning methods alone.Research, conducted in two Maryland middle schools, showed that middle school students who used the online field trips scored higher on national standardized reading comprehension tests than those who used traditional learning methods alone.Approximately 400, 7th and 8th graders from two Maryland public middle schools, one urban, one rural, participated in the study conducted during the 2003-2004 school year. The evaluation, conducted by ORC Macro, a Maryland consulting firm, as part of a "Ready to Teach" grant awarded to MPT by the U.S. Department of Education, showed a statistically significant difference in reading comprehension between the control group and the treatment group. Specifically, the study showed that use of the online field trips in classroom instruction:
Let’s take a look at the technology used to engage students through VFT. As we all know, our young generation is motivated and driven by the use of technology. It is a part of their everyday lives. VFT uses graphics, videos, animation, sound and interaction to engage students and maintain their interest.
When we commit to the adoption of Virtual Field Trips for our classrooms, we are taking steps toward improvement of our student’s educational experience. Financial savings is seen in cutting out the expense of gas, no bus expense through drivers and maintenance and no cost for admission to field trips. Student achievement increases because research shows an increase in reading interest and achievement. In addition, students do not have to miss other classes as would be required if they were traveling off campus. Chaperones are not necessary. The teacher will guide students through their field trip experience. Virtual Field Trips provide an opportunity for students to meet people face to face via technology. This would otherwise be impossible. Students can communicate and interact globally. VFT can start today and be finished tomorrow. It is flexible and provides the teacher with options such as a two part session trip.
As with any program, a few disadvantages can be expressed by some who have concerns about VFT. However, these can be eliminated with training and availability of technology. Teachers state that they have to sift through the millions of Virtual Field Trips available. This can be eliminated through training sessions and collaboration between disciplines as to the best resources to connect with. Technology is a must in order to use the program. Most schools have this technology already in place or grants available to purchase the technology. Engaging students in activities provided through VFT will stimulate students interest and get them actively involved in the lessons. Some schools currently block certain websites. This would need to be addressed by our technology personnel and lifted for certain sites that are deemed essential learning sites. These difficulties are minut and can be eliminated very easily.
We will now take a look at a few websites available online (free) to use in the classroom.
As stated earlier, VFT provides an opportunity for students to broaden their cultural and arts experiences beyond what they would ever be able to do through a physical field trip. Communication with other cultures has become a way of life. VFT allows for global communication from class to class. Global art work is impossible to view outside of a textbook. With VFT many great art works can be viewed by interacting with live museum tours around the world. Here we take a look at a teacher incorporating her lesson through art. Vik Muniz creates art out of food and other media. Students created similar art through self portraits using food. The teacher took pictures of her student’s work and sent it to the museum. The museum incorporated the students’ work into a custom virtual field trip to help the students make connections between Muniz’s work and their own.
OK, how will this all work? Listed on this slide are the tools you will need. Many schools are taking advantage of free web 2.0 tools and $100 Logitech webcams.
Rogers 5 states of adoption are: knowledge, persuasion, decision, implementation, and confirmation. We will take a look at these in our next group of slides.
I have provided knowledge of VFT for you in the definition, origination and uses of VFT. We have discussed the financial benefits and the savings VFT brings to our school system.
Let me add here that location of the field trip will no longer be an issue and safety is no longer a factor. The most precious savings though is seen in TIME. There is no loss of instruction and a teacher can start and stop the trip as needed.Location is not an issueMost precious savings- TIME (No loss of instruction-can start and stop)Student safety is not a factorTime in unloading and loading buses. Other classes are not missed. The trip would only last an hour or two (verses all day)
This slide list the advantages you will need to keep in mind when making this decision. As you can see, the possibilities are endless. In addition to the advantages already discussed, the technology used in VFT will benefit students in the homebound program. These students will be able to attend class and interact with their teacher and classmates through the use of technology used for VFT.
There are two models available for our schools. The first is a stationary set up, which will be permanently set up in designated classrooms. The other is a mobile set up where teachers can transport the tools from class to class.
In order to implement this program, we only need the following tools and a few simple tasks completed:lap tops, web cams, head phones, microphones, Skype, teacher training, teacher planning and student permissions.
There are commercial distributors such as Tramline available to you for incorporating the tools needed. The production of Virtual Field Trips is continuously growing. There are always new, free, online trips available. There are an endless number of VFT available online. Commercialization is usually seen over the internet. Now let’s listen to a couple of testimonies available.
Virtual Field Trips originated in 1995, but became widely used in 2000. I have left the other areas blank because we are presently experiencing the stage where this technology is beginning to be used at its potential.
Who are the early adopters? The early adopters are board members, superintendants, administrators, and teachers who are searching for alternative means to off campus field trips, school systems desiring the inclusion of homebound students within their classrooms and school systems seeking to provide the maximum learning experience for their students during a time of economic crisis.
The laggards are teachers who fear the use of technology and are reluctant to use technology. Also, some board members and superintendants are laggards due to the lack of knowledge they have about Virtual Field Trips. They express concerns about the cost of implementation, which would be eliminated if they were equipped with knowledge of VFT’s implementation cost.
I would like to encourage the Board of Directors to participate in the trial and observation groups that will be available to you. Through this experience, you will be exposed to other systems using VFT and engage in their successful programs. You will have the opportunity to experience VFT and ask questions one on one with those who are using the program.
DecentralizedTeachers adoptStudents gain in achievement, cultural experiences, art exposures and global communicationOther educators follow these leaders and adoptWide sharing of power and control among the membersTeachers need to share in the decision making process of this implementation.Teachers are on the forefront and the ones responsible for using these tools.
Who are the Key Agents?Teachers who are willing to try new innovations in their classroomsRogers (2003) explains how the expert is the resource system that joins the others to try new innovations
Change agents are teachers that are willing to try new innovation in their classrooms.
Develop a need – Cutbacks and economic crisis limits the face to face experiences and knowledge gained through off campus field trips Information exchange – Share successful experiences with other systems and coworkersDiagnose problems – Need for technology tools for instruction- Increased achievement scores through instruction with use of Virtual Field TripsIntent to change – Success of VFT increasing achievement scores in reading and students gain cultural, arts and global exposureIntent to action – Review existing programs and trial Stabilize adoption – Provide technology trainingAchieve terminal relationship – Utilize existing technology and use of free online Virtual Field Trips
I believe VFT has recently reached critical mass. Innovators and early adopters have recently started implementing the use of VFT in the entire educational arena. With the increased knowledge of VFT and the increased rate of educational cutbacks, the rate of adoption will move forward.
VFT allows the teacher to engage students in rich experiences. Teachers will be able to prepare students to become today’s leaders of knowledge and fluent in diverse cultural communication.It will also allow homebound students an opportunity to participate and learn alongside their peers. This particular area will save in cost through the reduction and perhaps elimination of homebound teachers. It will also allow homebound students an opportunity to participate and learn alongside their peers. This particular area will save in cost through the reduction and perhaps elimination of homebound teachers.
Budget cuts are no fault of our young generation. We have sacrificed our off campus field trip experiences at the cost of our students through budget cuts. It is imperative that we take action now to ensure they are engaged in technology, rich cultural arts, modern science and math exploration, along with global communication.
Our current and future students are a generation embedded in the use of technology. Technology prepares our students for their future experiences in post secondary education and careers.
Finally, our state no child left behind law requires that we equip our students with technology. I commend you for your dedication and commitment to technology in the classroom. I applaud you for your determination in ensuring that students in our school district are not left behind. I thank you for your commitment to our students in assuring their educational experiences are equipped with the most current technologies offered today.
Decision:<br />Increases student achievement on standardized test<br />Engages students/attention increases<br />Real world connections help students understand material<br />Multiple intelligence is used and increased learning happens<br />Possibilities are endless, travel and communication become global<br />In a rural area VFT exposes students to places they are lacking (zoo, museums, historical landmarks<br />The technology used will allow students who are homebound to attend and interact with classmates<br />
Decision Part 2<br />Stationary (set up in particular classrooms)<br />Mobile carts<br />
Confirmation<br />Commercial Distribution such as Tramline<br />http://www.tramline.com/trips.htm<br />Testimonies:<br />http://k12onlineconference.org/?p=279<br />http://www.iste.org/connect/iste-connects/blog-detail/09-02-15/The<br />Assistance with implementation/questions<br />
S-Curve for Virtual Field Trips<br />100<br /> 75<br /> 50<br /> 25<br /> 0<br /> 2000<br /> 1995<br /> Innovation Early Late Lagger Future <br /> Adopter Adopter<br />
Early Adopters<br /><ul><li>School Systems searching for alternative means to off campus field trips
School systems desiring the inclusion of homebound students in the classroom</li></li></ul><li>Laggards<br /><ul><li>Teachers who fear the use of technology and are reluctant to use technology.
Systems concerned about cost of implementation</li></ul>Strategies to help move the adoption forward:<br /><ul><li>Trial and observing (discussed on earlier slide)
Supportive Training</li></li></ul><li>Perceived Attributes<br />Trialability<br />Observability<br />Observe other systems<br />using VFT<br />Experience the VFT<br />before adopting<br />
Centralized or Decentralized<br />Decentralized<br />Teachers adopt<br />Students gain in achievement, cultural experiences, art exposures and global communication<br />Other educators follow these leaders and adopt<br />Wide sharing of power and control among the members<br />Teachers need to share in the decision making process of this implementation.<br />Teachers are on the forefront and the ones responsible for using these tools.<br />
Key Agents<br />Teachers who are willing to try new innovations in their classrooms<br />Rogers (2003) explains how the expert is the resource system that joins the others to try new innovations<br />
7 Roles of a Change Agent<br /><ul><li> Develop a need – Cutbacks and economic crisis limits the face to face experiences and knowledge gained through off campus field trips </li></ul>Information exchange – Share successful experiences with other systems and coworkers<br />Diagnose problems – Need for technology tools for instruction- Increased achievement scores through instruction with use of Virtual Field Trips<br />Intent to change – Success of VFT increasing achievement scores in reading and students gain cultural, arts and global exposure<br />Intent to action – Review existing programs and trial <br />Stabilize adoption – Provide technology training<br />Achieve terminal relationship – Utilize existing technology and use of free online Virtual Field Trips<br />
Critical Mass<br />Began slowly<br />Rate of adoption accelerates<br />
What does the adoption bring to our school system?<br />
References:<br />Devaney, L. (2008). Gas prices fuel rise in virtual field trips. eSchoolNews. Retrieved August 1, 2010 from: http://www.eschoolnews.com/news/topnews/index.cfm?i=54518<br />Hutcheson, J. (2008). Instructional Technology Tips. Electronic Field Trips. Troy University-Ft. Benning. Retrieved August 1, 2010 from: http://spectrum.troy.edu//~techtip/internet/fieldtrip.htm<br />Lacina, J. (2010). Designing a Virtual Field Trip. The CBS Interactive Business Network, Retrieved From: http://findarticles.com/p/articlesmi_qa3614is_200407/ai_n9454464/<br />Rogers, E.M. (2003). Diffusion of innovations (5th ed.). New York, NY: Free Press.<br />