I recently had the opportunity to review several digital field trip programs that are made by Digital Frog International. I jumped at the chance, since I am always looking for ways to help my children explore and learn. Thank you to Educents and Digital Frog for giving me access to the programs for a short time in order to review them. I am giving an honest review as a former teacher and current homeschooling parent.
The first program I reviewed is titled "The Wetlands". I found this program to be comprehensive. The topics included were erosion, flooding, nutrient cycles, types of wetlands, conservation, and more. There were many animations that showed information like how a bog is formed. The animal adaptation section was interesting and informative. My children enjoyed clicking the numbers on the map to find information about different animals and plants.
The second program that I reviewed is titled "The Rainforest". I was impressed with the amount of information found in this program. The topics included food sources, animal behavior, geography, plants, pollen and seed dispersal, rainforest strata, and more. My children enjoyed learning about symbiotic relationships. Another hot topic in our house is eye shine which is the light reflected from the back of an animal's eye. Eye shine is usually observed when nocturnal animals are out and about at night. Also, the eco-conscious part of me loved the information included about human impact on the rain forest through logging, drug research, different types of agriculture, and more. This is a program we will use over and over again to learn about different topics or review information.
The third program I reviewed is titled "The Desert". My children were mesmerized by the animals and plants this field trip explored. My son asked if we could visit a desert in person. I told him we could schedule a trip in the next year. This field trip had five deserts available for exploration. This was a great surprise because the photographs and videos were not exactly the same. My children were very interested in animal locomotion which is different in sandy, hot environments than in other environments. We also enjoyed seeing the information about burrowing owls since we have burrowing owls in our hometown.
All three programs allow the user to click on an unknown word and get a definition. The three programs also had photographs and video of the animals and plants listed int he field trips. There are games in each of the programs which helped my children comprehend the information. I also appreciated the way each program used maps to help my children understand the geography and location of each field trip. Each program also has a numbered map which helps guide the user. I absolutely recommend this line of educational programs. Visiting wetlands, rainforests, and deserts is optimal. However, many of us cannot afford to visit these places which means a virtual field trip is an affordable and enjoyable way to learn.
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