Friday, October 8, 2010

Not Now, I'm off to the Bog . . .

Digital Frog Virtual Field Trips
Digital Frog International
RR#2, 7377 Calfass Rd., Puslinch, Ontario, NOB 2JO, Canada
Tel: 519-766-1097, 1-800-621-3764 (FROG)  Fax: 519-767-9994

When is the last time you went to the Rain Forest?  Explored the Wetlands?  Spent time in the Desert?
Let me invite you to take a trip with me.  I recently had the opportunity to visit all of these places to explore and learn in depth about their unique features.

Yes, it's TOS Product Review time.  The products reviewed are Digital Frog Virtual Field Trips.  No, this is not a field trip around the frog body.  The company does offer a Virtual Frog Dissection DVD, which looks interesting, but that's another review.  They also have a Science Matrix: Cell Structure and Function DVD.

The Virtual Field Trip DVDs contain beautiful color pictures, maps, flora, fauna (that's plants and animals), web games, a gazillion (that really big number we always hear about) links, and video clips. 

The Rain Forest:  In this DVD you can explore Blue Creek Rainforest Reserve in Belize, Central America.  The animals, plants, seasons, habitats, and food are covered.  Think high trees, tropical breezes and colorful birds.  There is also an interactive Build a Tree web game.

The Wetlands:  In this DVD you can explore Cloud Lake in Algonquin Park, Ontario, Canada.  Bog formation, food webs, photosynthesis marshes, swamps, peatland are covered.  Think soggy bog, water animals and an abundance of trees.  There is also an interactive Bog Food web game.

The Desert:  In this DVD you can explore the world's deserts.  Climate, geology, homeostasis and adaptations are covered.  Think dry, sandy, lizards and cacti.  There is also an interactive Build a Desert web game.

In addition to the information mentioned, there are teacher and student resources available as well as a Frogger Club with even more resources.  There are state standard coverage summaries, related links, and free image galleries and student worksheets. 

The DVDs may be purchased online at the company website, , as a download or on CD/DVD.  The price per DVD, $60, did seem a bit much, that is, until I got into the DVDs and found out how much valuable information is included.  A better plan would be to get all 3 which is only $125.  Their other products are Digital Frog 2.5 at $85, and Science Matrix: Cell Structure and Function at $40.  The DVDs are available for home, classroom or co-op use.  Before purchasing, you may download a limited demo version.

Our whole family enjoyed our virtual trips around the various parts of the world.  We found out about many different animals, ecology, our impact upon the land and it's inhabitants, photosynthesis, climates, geography and geology.  We looked at maps, viewed video clips on a variety of topics and played games along the way.  We also saw beautiful scenery and experienced the feeling of "being there".  If you really want to experience any of these places but could never afford to make the trip, these DVDs are a steal, and you can go back anytime!

These products were provided to me free of charge to use and review.  No other compensation was received.  The observations and opinions expressed are my own, based on using the products with my family.

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