Science and Children Volume 49, Number 4, ISSN 0036-8148
Children in classrooms and scientists in laboratories engage in similar activities: they observe, ask questions, and try to explain phenomena. Video conferencing technology can remove the wall between the classroom and the laboratory, bringing children and scientists together. Virtual experiences and field trips can provide many of the benefits of collaborations between scientists and students without the time and cost required to travel between sites. Technology allows students to use equipment typically found only in professional research labs and to collaborate with scientists and other students. This article reports on a virtual inquiry experience in the area of nanoscience. Students interact with a scientist virtually and make nanoscale observations of insects using an online scanning electron microscope. Providing opportunities for children to interact with a larger research community allowed them to gain an appreciation for how scientific knowledge develops. (Contains 1 online resource.)
Harlow, D. & Nilsen, K. (2011). Virtual Inquiry Experiences. Science and Children, 49(4), 42-45.