National Geographic

Explorer Classroom

Show your students that science, exploration, and conservation are alive outside of their textbooks. Join a virtual field trip with a National Geographic Explorer!

Photograph by David Alan Harvey

April 2018
Year of the Bird

2018 is the centennial of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, one of the most powerful and important bird-protection laws ever passed. In honor of this milestone, National Geographic has joined with the Audubon Society, BirdLife International, and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, as well as  nature lovers around the world to celebrate the “Year of the Bird” and commit to protecting birds today and for the next hundred years. This April, Explorer Classroom will feature scientists and experts from around the world that study birds. See the full schedule below!

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April 26, 2018 at 1:30 PM EST

Paul Rose and the pristine seas crew

A man at the front line of exploration and one of the world’s most experienced field science and polar experts, Paul Rose helps scientists unlock and communicate global mysteries in the most remote and challenging regions of the planet.

Former Vice President of the Royal Geographical Society and Chair of the Expeditions and Fieldwork Division, Paul is currently Expedition Leader for the National Geographic Pristine Seas Expeditions. Pristine Seas is an exploration, research, and media project on a mission to help protect 20 of the last wild places in the ocean by 2020. This includes preserving areas that are pristine or near pristine and also helping to restore areas that may have suffered some human impacts but still have unique features such as large animals, healthy bottom communities, and outstanding biodiversity.

Paul has survived being run over by a huge iceberg whist diving in Antarctica, survived a polar bear attack in the Arctic and a mountain has been named after him in Antarctica. He also rides a penny farthing and a unicycle!

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Photograph courtesy of Paul Rose

upcoming events


April 27

2:00 PM EST

Disease ecologist

Ravinder Sehgal

Ravinder Sehgal is a professor in the Dept. of Biology at San Francisco State University. His research focuses on the ecology of diseases in birds. He studies how deforestation affects the prevalence and diversity of avian malaria in African rainforest birds. With a background in cell biology, he takes advantage of current advances in molecular biology to address large questions in disease emergence. Since an early age, he was fascinated and saddened by the extinction of species, from dinosaurs to dodos. Through research and teaching he strives to make an impact in conservation biology.

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April 30

1:00 PM EST

Conservation Geneticist

Kristen Ruegg

Kristen Ruegg has over 15 years of experience working on migratory birds and is the co-founder and co-director of the Bird Genoscape Project. Kristen oversees research on 14 species of birds and works to bridge partnerships between academia, NGO’s and governmental agencies to translate the science of the Bird Genoscape Project into conservation action.

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Getting Started

All you need to participate in Explorer Classroom is the ability to access YouTube. Many classrooms also use a projector for bigger and better viewing!

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Register for an Explorer Classroom session by clicking the “Register Now” button. You’ll find the link to the live stream on the registration form.  

Prep your Class

The first six classrooms to register will be awarded on-camera spots.* Those classrooms will have the opportunity to interact with the featured Explorer directly—just like in a Skype call. If you are one of the chosen classrooms , you’ll hear from your host Joe Grabowski or a Nat Geo staff member by email at least one week before the event.

If you do not secure an on-camera spot, no worries! An unlimited number of people can watch live, and anyone can ask questions by tweeting #ExplorerClassroom.

See you there!

Tune in at the scheduled time and date! The live stream link is on the form you used to register.

If you can’t join live, you can catch up later. All Explorer Classroom sessions will be archived on YouTube.


​*Please Note: Explorer Classroom sessions are live events hosted on YouTube. They are open to the public and recorded. Please share these terms with parents of students who will participate live on camera. If any parents or students prefer not to be on camera, please accommodate their wishes in your classroom.

Archived Hangouts

All Explorer Classroom hangouts are recorded so you can review them a second time or save them for just the right moment in the semester. Browse our archive to start exploring now!

Meet More Nat Geo Explorers

See the remarkable range of work National Geographic explorers are doing across the globe, and find out how they continue to make an impact as they explore and protect our planet.

Learn More

Photos: Ben Mirin by Drew FUlton, Erika Bergman by Barry Brown, Andrew Stein by Katy Daily, Carlton Ward Jr. by Mac Stone, Ricardo Moreno by Mauro Colombo, Shivani Bhalla courtesy Shivani Bhalla, Paola Bouley courtesy Paola Bouley, Steve Winter courtesy Steve Winter