I had a great conversation with Maria Pauley, Principal and sixth grade teacher at Lanakila Baptist School in Waipahu, Hawaii.
Maria was telling me that it was difficult for the kids at her school to go on many trips to other places (off their island) because the airfare to even get to a place where you could rent a car and travel is prohibitive for many families (think thousands of dollars).
To counteract that and give her kids a view of the world, they go on virtual field trips to visit both historical and biblical sites.
(Warning: Any time you show a video to kids, watch it first to make sure it is appropriate is all respects – including doctrinally. You can explain a difference to a child, but you need to be prepared for what you will say.)
One website Maria uses is Rick Steves. Although Rick Steves tours are mostly in Europe, he does have some videos of Israel. He talks about the Bible, but also includes facts from other religions, so be prepared to talk about what you see.
YouTube also has videos not only of Israel, but of Paul’s journeys.
Take some time to look around the web and see what virtual field trips you can find.
- Study the biblical references to the place.
- Color flags (on paper) from the country.
- Plan a snack from the country. I found a YouTube video where kids try snacks from Isarel. (When we were in Israel, the hotels welcomed us with a glass of orange juice – Jaffa oranges are super sweet and tasty.)
- Watch the video.
- Discuss the video and line up the places you see on screen with the biblical passages.
You can do this with your personal kids or the kids you’re teaching. And thanks, Maria, for giving us the idea of virtual field trips.