Virtual Bank Holiday Weekend

Perhaps some of you had plans to take a short holiday this weekend, take advantage of May Day and enjoy some time off work. Do not despair, perhaps you still can! We are going to offer you some ways of doing this from the comfort and safety of your own home. You can explore the city you had in mind taking time to appreciate the buildings and architecture, while popping in to some of the museums and you might even be able to appreciate some of the best views of the city.

As we may be feeling slightly nostalgic for what may have been and for what may not be for some time yet, remember the world is still out there and we can still enjoy it and learn about it, albeit in a different way.

Let’s start with something possibly familiar to many. We can use Google Earth to get a bird’s eye view of almost anywhere in the world! Why not type in the address of where you were planning on travelling to, or even better, the trip you can only dream of! To do this just use the SEARCH option on Google Earth. However, what often happens when the world is your oyster is you may not be able to choose! For this you can use the VOYAGER option and the editor will give you some good ideas and even some games and trivia to enjoy on your virtual visit.

Rooftop view

While you are in the city you cannot leave without visiting some of the beautiful museums it has to offer. Using Google Art and Culture you can visit many museums around the world enjoying a virtual tour and high-resolution images of the art on display. You can enjoy the art of Gustav Klint in the National Gallery of Prague and in the MoMA in New York all in the same day.

If you would prefer a roof-top view without feeling vertigo you can also have some fun with that and identify the other emblematic buildings and monuments around the city. Being able to do this without waiting for someone to get out of your way or trying to take a photo without someone else photo-bombing you is suddenly a very attractive alternative! Enjoy the breath-taking view of Rio de Janeiro or marvel at the surroundings of the Taj Mahal for as long as you want in the company of who you chose.

If you want to know more about the Taj Mahal, the Pyramids or some other Wonders of the World you can do so with the street view projects already prepared for your enjoyment.

While we wholly appreciate that there is nothing like the real thing and to really appreciate a city we need to use all our senses; smell the city, taste it’s food and listen to its sounds, we feel this is a very good alternative to broaden our horizons and kill the travel bug slightly.

Perhaps you can use some of these ideas for the classes you are preparing for your students and have them experience, explore and wonder by seeing what they are learning about in a different way. Not to mention the advantages of doing it alone, being present and aware, rather than being distracted as they would be if they were on a school trip with their classmates.

Vocabulary

  • To pop in (somewhere) – to enter, go inside or visit briefly.
  • The world is your oyster – you can go anywhere or do anything you want to.
  • Photo-bomb – purposely putting oneself in the view of someone else’s photo.
  • Broaden (your) horizons – expand your range of knowledge and experience.
  • (Have) the travel bug – a strong desire to travel.

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