Usually during our summer “break” (we school all year but take off from doing too much) I sit down and plan a few field trips. Then, in September our homeschool co-op adds a few in as well. I am part of a group now that does three field trips a month. We meet every Thursday and three of them are field trip days and one is a Chapel Day (spent at a local church doing art, PE, Bible Study, etc.). Some trips are big and some are small like to the local park to play.
During my planning time I try to see what we will be studying that year for each subject. There are some fantastic field trips for history, science, art, music, and PE. I like to keep a record of them in one location for reference throughout the year. I like to use a “bullet style” journal for this.
A few ideas for field trips are:
- Art Museums
- Children’s Museums
- Trader Joe’s (they do a tour and lesson about food)
- An Aquarium
- The Symphony (there is a local one here that does a children’s show once a year)
- Historical Sites (I live near Colonial Williamsburg, Yorktown, and Jamestown and we take full advantage of the local discounts plus they offer special homeschool days)
- A Local Park (an easy one but fun for the kids)
- State Parks
- Local Pizzeria (they will give a tour and let you leave with a pizza)
- Local Ice Cream Shop (same as above)
- Farms (these are always a big hit in the fall)
- Free shows at the local library
- Have a magician come and teach the kids a few tricks
- An Airport (we did this at our local airport and it was so fun)
- The Zoo
These are just a few ideas but there are an infinite number of field trips to go on. So during the summer I also purchase a “Field Trip Journal” for my kids to fill out after (and during) the field trips. These can range from an elaborate design (like the Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal) or just a blank notebook. I have used both and there are good advantages to both. It just depends on your child and your budget.
As we continue on in this New Year and almost half way through the school year, get out a notebook and check to see how many field trips you have been on so far and how many you have planned for the remainder of the year. We go on lots of field trips but each family is different. Going on just one a month is a lot more than most students get.
Field trips are a fun way to learn about something new (or old) and get out of the house. Sometimes when we are stuck in the house all the time, just going to a new environment gets our brains working in a different way. We learn differently when we are out of our homes as well.