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App review by Amanda Bindel, Common Sense Education | Updated September 2013
Field Trip

Field Trip

With a few tweaks, nifty augmented reality app can be classroom-ready

Learning rating
Community rating
Based on 8 reviews
Privacy rating
Not yet rated Expert evaluation by Common Sense
Subjects & Skills
Social Studies, Character & SEL

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5 images

Pros: Impressive resources include historical markers and texts.

Cons: There's no search function to easily explore other areas.

Bottom Line: Field Trip isn't as searchable as Google Earth, but it's a strong local resource.

Though not designed with classroom use in mind, Field Trip is one of those tools that a creative teacher can use in many ways. Kids can explore local history and culture in social studies. With some assistance in scrolling to the right location, kids can explore other parts of the United States and Europe, as well, on a virtual field trip. Kids can read nonfiction texts in language arts or examine voice and purpose by reading the different sources available as a writing exercise. Teachers can find images or articles for places or events to share with the entire class. Even if not using in class, teachers can offer the free app as a suggestion for parents to use before winter or summer break travels.

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Editor's Note: Field Trip is no longer available.

Using GPS location data, Field Trip runs in the background on your phone (or device). When you're near an interesting place, a card pops up with more information about the place -- from restaurants and bars to historical markers and museums. Users can log in with their Google account and save favorites. They can also share spots via email or social media. You can actively search using the map to find field trip spots. Or, the app can run in the background on the phone as you travel, with cards popping up when you're near featured spots. You can configure your settings so that the cards are read aloud, too, as the locations are encountered. Users can customize their interests within Architecture; Historic Places & Events; Lifestyle; Offers & Deals; Food, Drinks & Fun; Cool & Unique; and Arts & Museums. Each category pulls content from several sources (which you can customize). For example, in Historic Places & Events, content comes from more than 25 different sources including Historvius, The Historical Marker Database, Archaelogical Institute of America, and Arcadia Publishing. The cards are short descriptions but include links to more in-depth information.

Before using Field Trip with kids in school, you may want to deselect some of the sources that may be irrelevant or distracting, or that include inappropriate language (perhaps the Lifestyle; Offers & Deals; and Food, Drinks, & Fun sections in entirety, and some of the sources within the Cool & Unique section). That leaves Architecture, Historic Places & Events, and Arts & Museums for kids to explore. Field Trip then serves as a tour guide, showing kids around the area and sharing interesting stories and bits of information. With the links included on the cards, kids can find answers to questions they may have, as well. Since kids are directing their learning and exploring hands-on, they are more likely to be engaged and remember what they learn. Kids can also explore other places (not in their immediate location) by scrolling through the map and zooming in, but at the time of this review, there's no zip code or address search option.

Overall Rating


Kids will enjoy learning about locations near and far as well as using the map to find field-trip-worthy spots across the U.S. and Europe.


History comes to life as kids explore geographical locations. The amount of information available from this easy-to-use resource engages kids and extends learning through articles and links.


Navigation is intuitive, and users are guided through the setup process step by step. You can save favorite locations if you're logged in to a Google account.

Common Sense reviewer
Amanda Bindel Classroom teacher

Community Rating

(See all 8 reviews) (8 reviews)
Featured review by
Rachel M. , Classroom teacher
Classroom teacher
Cornell Senior High School
Coraopolis, United States
International Exploration with Google Field Trip
The photos served as a great tool to helping my students visualize what Barcelona and Madrid look like. It was better for exploration purposes than Google Earth because the "cards" make it very easy to select sites and learn about them. I love that this app is international. It makes it much more relevant for my purposes. I also like that many cards had information in the target language. It was nice authentic language practice for my students. I wrote above that I was initially marking "favorit ...
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