What are Internet Field Trips?
Houghton Mifflin Science DiscoveryWorks Internet Field Trips use carefully screened Internet sites that will provide your students with additional background on the science topics they are learning about in the Unit Resources and Activities. The linked sites are colorful, exciting, and many are interactive. Some will take your students on a "field trip" to places they have never visited before.
When should I use an Internet Field Trip?
You can use an Internet Field Trip to introduce a Resource or as a follow-up to a Resource or an Activity.
How should I prepare for the use of the Internet Field Trip?
Houghton Mifflin has screened every Internet site listed for the Internet Field Trips. However, sites may change after the screening process. Therefore, you'll want to preview the sites yourself before your class views them. Print out a Trip Log and then make copies for each student. Be sure to closely monitor and supervise students whenever they are using the Internet.
How should I help my students use the Internet Field Trip Web sites?
Encourage your students to explore the Internet sites. Have them click on relevant headings, menu items, clickable graphics, and links that are related to the science content they are studying.
Do I need any special plug-ins for the Internet Field Trips?
Whenever possible, Houghton Mifflin has indicated whether special plug-ins are needed for a particular Web site. Before you take your class on an Internet Field Trip, you'll want to download some of the more common plug-ins, such as QuickTime, SoundMachine, RealPlayer, Acrobat Reader, Shockwave, Crescendo, and HyperStudio Player.
How should I use the Trip Logs?
The features of the Trip Log are broad enough and open-ended enough so that every student can benefit from them. Depending on their own prior knowledge and range of experiences, students will explore the material at various levels.
TRIP LOG FEATURES
WHAT I ALREADY KNOW ABOUT...
This is an opportunity to assess students' prior knowledge of a given topic.
OTHER THINGS I WANT TO KNOW ABOUT....
Have students pose questions that might be answered by visiting the Web site.
I visited this Web site:
Have students list the Web page and/or the URL (Web address).
WHAT I LEARNED ON MY INTERNET FIELD TRIP
Since students' prior knowledge of science topics varies, and since their navigation through the Web sites will differ, what they learn may also differ. You may wish to have students share their Trip Logs. You can compile a class list of information gleaned on-line or develop a concept map showing how ideas from the Web site are related.
You may wish to have students define words in context and later find definitions in dictionaries--either on-line or off-line. You might compile a class list of new words from each Web site visited.
WHAT I SAW ON MY INTERNET FIELD TRIP
Depending on the number and kinds of graphics on each linked Web site, students' choice of what to draw will vary. You may wish to evaluate students on the accuracy of the drawing and how pertinent it is to the topic under investigation.
WHAT I THINK ABOUT MY INTERNET FIELD TRIP
Have children circle the face that best describes how they feel about the Internet Field Trip. Here are some things to keep in mind as you guide your class in rating the Internet Field Trips.
Help in Evaluating Web Sites
To enable children to become critical users of the Internet, they need the tools to evaluate Web sites. You may wish to discuss the following with your class:
- Is the Web site written in words I can understand?
- Do the pictures and photos teach me something new?
- Can I find my way around the Web site?
- Does the Web site make me uncomfortable? If it does, then I should tell a teacher, parent, or responsible adult.
- Does the Web site ask me for information about myself or my family? If it does, I should not answer any questions that give personal information. I should tell a teacher, parent, or responsible adult about the questions.
A Good Source for Teachers
Refer to the American Library Association's Selection Criteria:
700+ Great Sites--Selection Criteria: How to tell if you're looking at a great web site.