Whether you are nearing the end of your school year, right in the midst or even on a summer break, it’s always a good time to consider a field trip for you and your students. Here are some great ideas for some hands-on, integrated field trips. Plan ahead and make the most of your experiences! ~EMP
Field trips are one of the most exciting parts of every student’s school year. It is important to find a way to tie the field trips back to a topic that you are teaching in the classroom, but you also want the experience to be something that your students really enjoy doing. These five field trips are both educational and enjoyable and should have students looking for more learning opportunities.
Touring a science lab is a great field trip for both younger and older students. If you are teaching an advanced science class in high school, you may want to consider setting up a field trip into a laboratory or university science lab where students can see the experiments and research that goes on inside the lab. If you are teaching human biology or even basic biology, you may be able to set up a tour of a gross anatomy lab, so students can see in person what they have been studying all year. For younger students, you may be able to tour a science lab that offers a hands on experience for younger students or a science museum with a laboratory set up for younger students.
Another memorable field trip is a visit to a historic reenactment site. These are the sites that have actors dressed in period costume doing the tasks that go along with specific time period. Many communities have one of these within a day’s travel, at least once during the year. Children enjoy being transformed and learn to appreciate the work that had to be done on a regular basis just to survive. This is a great field trip for older elementary school age and middle school students because you can tie it directly into the history lessons you are learning in school.
A working farm is another great opportunity for a field trip. This will allow the students to see the animals and the way that they are raised, as well as see how crops are grown. Many organic farms will allow students to come out for a tour of the farm. There are farms in nearly every community, and many offer outreach programs for schools to participate in. Children love to talk about the animals and different aspects of growing food, and will always remember their trip to the farm.
Another field trip that encourages children to take what they are learning in the classroom and apply it directly to life is a nature field trip. During this field trip you will take your students to a nature preserve and have them look for a set number of different species of animals and plants. You can talk about the proper way to collect specimens and give students the chance to observe nature up close. This is a great option for a life sciences or biology class. If you have a geology class you can take them out to look at different landforms and mountains in your area. It often helps to see these formations in person if possible.
Overnight Field Trips
Many schools begin overnight field trips in the fourth or fifth grade. The overnight field trip allows you to visit a lot of different places a bit further away from home. Some options include camping or staying aboard a ship or in a planetarium. You may be able to visit a science museum or a historic site and hike through nature. You will need to check with your district to learn about the over night field trip policies. These trips are often very memorable for the students, making learning fun.
Audrey Porterman is the main researcher and writer for doctoralprograms.org. Her most recent accomplishment includes graduating from Ohio State, with a degree in business management. Her current focus for the site involves an education phd and online doctoral degrees.