On Wednesday, 9th March my class will be taking part in Mission Explore Day, using the premise of the Mission Explore book to explore and find out about our school’s village in more detail. The aim of the day for me as a teacher is to look at integrating mobile technology into outdoor learning and how it could change the way educational visits are organised. The aim of the day for the children is to discover more about the local environment, which links in nicely with our environmental change topic.
My class have already been divided into 6 groups of 4 and each assigned a team name. On the day, each team will have an ipad and an ipod touch to take out with them, each teacher will take two teams and have a mifi device to provide internet access while out and about, and each team will have two laptops available back at school.
The first lesson of the day sees us going out around different areas of the village (I have split the village into 3 areas and colour coded) and planning some mission explore challenges for the other groups to do in that area. This will involve the children finding things out, recording their ideas and thinking creatively about what challenges they could set.
At break time we will come back to school and spend the second lesson putting all of the challenges onto a google map using the pin function. The children haven’t used google maps before but I’m hoping they will pick it up fairly quickly (we have used other google apps so they know how to log in etc). The pins they drop onto the map will also be colour coded in the same way that the village map has been so that we know which group wrote them. This map will be embedded into our blog for the day at http://missionexplore.trinitylower.net if you want to see the ideas that the children come up with. I’ve put a couple up already that I want all groups to complete.
After lunch, the children will again go out round the village, this time to the other two coloured areas and have a go at completing the challenges written earlier in the day by the other groups. They will again have the ipads and the ipod touches to record their findings. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem possible for the children to be able to send their findings from their devices to the blog directly as it is a multisite blog (I’m hoping someone might know a way around this though!) which would have been good to blog as we went but I’m thinking about what we can do instead.
At the end of the day we will all return to school to discuss what we found out and how many challenges we all managed to complete.
I’m really looking forward to the day and just hoping it’s not going to rain! The children all seem really excited too and I’m hoping they get lots out of a day being outdoors. I’m trying to think of ways to follow up the day too; perhaps by creating an information guide to the village in a mission explore style or perhaps some videos (although I have the problem that the version of movie maker we have at school is not compatible with videos taken on the ipod so that could cause some issues). It would be a shame not to do some follow up work with them and I have Friday morning to do something as my student isn’t in that day. I’m sure the children will have lots of ideas to follow up too.