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Curriculum Unit: Learning Via the Virtual Field Trip

Learning Via the Virtual Field Trip 
by Julie Vitulano, New York City Public Schools 

Lesson One: The Art of Persuasion

Aim: How can we identify the learning opportunities that are presented at a zoo?

Materials: Computer with Internet access, word processing program, notebook.

Instructional Objectives: Students will be able to navigate around the Six Flags web site to get ideas about learning opportunities at the park; students will be able to relate these educational opportunities to their school subjects.

Motivation: Teacher asks:
Who has been to Six Flags Great Adventure in New Jersey?
Who went through the Wild Safari while they were there?
Did they have a good time? If you wanted to go again, how would you try to persuade your parent or guardian to take you to the park?


  1. Students are asked to go to http://sixflags.com/wildsafari/ and navigate the site for about five minutes. They are to write down any ideas they may have about what they would learn from a trip to the park.
  2. Students get together in groups of three and share what they have written.
  3. The class is surveyed and a list of learning experiences is written on the board by a volunteer student with good writing skills.
  4. The students are asked to add learning opportunities described by other students to their lists. They are then directed to write the academic subject that corresponds to each type of learning. For example: Seeing the different animals and observing their behavior would be associated with biology.
  5. Next, the students are asked to create a school assignment for each of the following subjects that could be enhanced by a trip to Wild Safari: English, math, science, geography, business.
Homework: Playing devil's advocate, students write a list of the reasons why a trip to the Wild Safari at Six Flags is not a good idea.


Lesson Two: Preparing Arguments
Lesson Three: Services For The Disabled At Wild Safari
Lesson Four: Drafting an Essay
Lesson Five: Assessment Rubric


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