Last week, I began the process with several teachers to utilize Google+ as well as Google Hangouts to provide professional development opportunities (PD in PJ's). Another opportunity that exists with these tools is the Connected Classrooms project.
The idea is that through Google Hangouts, you can participate in numerous virtual field trips. This is essentially Google's response to the decline in actual field trips due to budget crunches. You participate virtually and can interact with the presenters through video chat as well as a typing chat. Questions can be answered live right before all participants. So while you and your classroom are asking questions about Lemurs to a zoologist at the Minnesota Zoo, students across the country get to share and participate in the same discussion.
What if you really want to participate in an event, but it just doesn't fit your time-frame? That's the beauty of Google Hangouts as they record the event live so that you can watch it later at your own convenience. You may not get to participate in the live discussion, but your kids still get to be a part of the event as you can still post questions/view the discussion that took place on the day of the event. Take this one for example.