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Thursday, December 3, 2009

Meet Me at the Corner

Mel's Thoughts:
As a homeschooling Mama, I'm always on the lookout for new and different things to use in our endeavors....whether to further our studies in a certain subject or to help me illustrate what Jacob is learning.  We recently had the opportunity to review Meet Me at the Corner, a website that is full of virtual field trips, founded by Donna Guthrie in 2006.  This is something that any child can enjoy, whether homeschooled or traditionally schooled.  It's a resource I can use on those yuck winter days, when the going gets tough, and we just need a slight break from the norm.  

I took the time to watch an episode, just to see how the site works.  I chose to watch Interview With a Veteran: Evacuation of Saigon.  The first thing I noticed was that a child was doing the actual video and interview, which makes it great for kids because they can watch interaction between one of their peers and the subject/person of interest, at hand.  It makes it a bit more kid-friendly and even more interesting, since it's questions that they might ask themselves that they are learning the answers to.  Now, with each video also comes questions that can be used, along with learning activities; there are also other websites that you can link to, in order to provide further study on that subject, if your child shows a lot of interest in it or he just needs more info.  For example, along with this video came weblinks to the USS Midway Museum, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and to Veterans' Day crafts.  There were also recommended books at the bottom of the post.  Honestly, this could be used for a great supplemental history lesson, if you just need something different than textbooks for a day, because with all of the video, activities, and study questions, it's a lesson plan for any learning style.  This site would be great for visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learning styles, since it covers all the bases.

Other episodes you might find of interest include, but are not limited to, the following:
.....and many more.  This site is a great blessing, when you'd love to take your children to see far away places and learn more about their world, but it's not always feasible, in terms of time and money. 

The site also incorporates the Big Apple Book Club, which is a series of book reviews for kids, done by actual kids.  This is exciting to me, since Jacob loves to read.  There is also a series of lessons done by video, such as one on How to Make a Video Book Review.  This gives me ideas of actually letting Jacob submit his own reviews at some point.  There are also contests listed on the website, that are available for certain ages. 

All in all, I found Meet Me at The Corner to be such a wonderful resource and a delight to review.  Their videos are also listed on Curriki, Teacher Tube, Next Vista, and Watch Know.  New episodes are uploaded every two weeks.  I love the fact that the videos that are uploaded on this website are not only educational, but other children from around the world have actually recorded or worked on these podcasts.  What a great way to educate and inform....and learn!

Melissa J's Thoughts
Wow! And Wow again! What a brilliant idea this website is! I love it!
There are so many field trips for kids to watch. Some of the options were:
My favorite was the field trip to a perfume maker. I've always wondered about how perfumes are created so it drew my interest. Of course, it was geared for kids, but this adult enjoyed watching it!

There are more than "just" videos on teach of these episodes. The page also includes additional learning activities, websites to explore, and books to read to glean more information the subject matter at hand. Each unique page is an invaluable resource for learning.

There are also book reviews with the Big Apple Book Club and Video Podcasting Lessons for kids to watch as well.

I think the thing I like the most about this site, is each of these videos are done by kids, not adults. This makes it even more attractive for kids to watch each episode. Of course kids are going to want to watch other kids!
Even better? Kids can submit their own videos to the site!  There is also a contest corner, where kids can get involved in certain contests like the My Stories and Poems Writing Contest which ends on December 31st of this year.
(Disclosure: We were provided monetary incentive to review this site, Meet Me at the Corner, in association with MamaBuzz.)


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