Virtual Vacations

To many people, going on a vacation means going on a trip. It isn't always possible to go away on a trip. Why not take a virtual vacation? It can be almost as much fun and can give you a chance to learn about new places and things.

There are websites which are virtual tours of other parts of the world. For example, try Virtual Hawaii or Landscapes of Nova Scotia or a trip to the Mojave Desert at Desert Tortoise Natural Area. For more ideas, visit Virtual Fieldtrips or Virtual Guidebooks, or the OOPS Virtual Field Trips page.

Books give great virtual vacations. Read about another place or time. Younger children might like Joy Cowley's book about the Central American rain forest, Red-Eyed Tree Frog. Older students may like Steve Jenkins' book about Mount Everest, Top of the World: Climbing Mount Everest, or Ted & Betsy Lewin's Gorilla Walk which tells about a trip into the home area of the mountain gorilla. For some more book recommendations, visit Children's Choices. These and many more books can be found at your local library.

Look around your own neighborhood as if you had never been there before. What is going on? What interesting animals and plants can you find? Take notes on what you see. Keep a journal including sketches of interesting things. How do the "local people" live? What do they do for fun? Do they raise any of their own food? How would an explorer describe your neighborhood, your family, your yard? 

Henry David Thoreau was asked once if he had traveled much and he answered, "Yes - around Concord" (his home town). What do you think he meant?
View text-based website