Five tech tools to engage students in and out of the classroom
ForestLearning does a roundup of five useful online tools to teach students about our planet.
In no particular order, we explore how you can get the most out of technology in your next lesson.
Coming in at number one is the AGTA Award Winner for Best Reference Resource 2022 – ForestLearning ForestVR toolkit and app.
Packed full of 360-degree videos and photo environments, the ForestVR app allows you to access ForestLearning resources from anywhere, any time. The ForestVR app also offers a range of extra classroom friendly functionality for ease of delivery for teachers including a sync function to allow you as a teacher to start, pause and stop experiences for the whole class, map locations of all 360-degree environments (photos) feature, and the ability to save a lesson’s required experiences and photos to favourites for easy accessibility.
Watch professionally made 360-degree videos and photo tours on your phone, iPad, Smart Board or VR Headset of productive forests, agroforestry farms, Australian forest types, and timber mills as well as giving students a preview into the everyday lives of the people who work in the wood and forest products. Teachers and students can find engaging, multimedia content listed by topic, or explore the interactive map of content by location.
The app has recently been updated with all new content for you and your students to enjoy for free and is available to download for free on the Apple app store, Google Play and Oculus Go.
More than just a way to get from A to B, Google Maps is a powerful resource for teachers.
In your geography class, the Google Maps ‘My Maps’ tool is perfect to create case studies and land use maps, present fieldwork data, and measure distances.
The potential of Google Maps extends beyond just geography! Google street view is a cross-curricular wonder, allowing your class to go on virtual field trips, do descriptive writing exercises or even be inspired for their art lessons.
And, thankfully for the less tech savvy among us, there are lots of step-by-step guides online to show you how to best utilise these for your lessons.
Google Lens is a fun online tool that uses AI to identify objects, images, words and even plants via your phone camera. Point your phone – the information is all there!
Google Lens is a great asset for students when doing homework or learning from home.
Beyond the classroom, Google Lens can be used on field trips by teachers and students to help identify and get real time information on the go.
Bring the real world to the classroom through virtual tour technology.
ForestLearning ForestVR photo tours are hosted by Roundme. These tours allow students to virtually visit plantations and timber processing facilities, giving them insight into how seeds become trees which are then, ultimately, turned into timber.
ForestLearning’s upcoming ForestVR photo tours will also be hosted on VRTY.
The forest and mill virtual photo tours are complete with hotspots and interactive content to accompany the ForestVR 360-degree videos.
And, for assessment, students can even create tours with hotspots for themselves using Roundme or VRTY naked environments (360-degree photos with no preloaded information)
All ForestVR content is available on the ForestLearning website and on our app.\
As the most dominant trees in Australia, eucalypts are beloved – by popular vote, the top three favourite native trees in Australia this year were eucalypts (river red gum, snow gum and ghost gum).
Given that they are now officially the ‘top’ tree, it makes sense that there’s an app that gives you complete descriptions of all 934 species of eucalyptus, angophora and corymbia trees across Australia. At the tap of a finger, you can access over twelve thousand images to help identify a tree, plus you’ll find facts sheets to learn more about each eucalypt species.
Since the app doesn’t need the internet to work, it is also ideal for field work as well as a classroom setting. However, the information is also available on the EUCLID website.
The EUCLID app can be downloaded the Apple app store and Google Play.