A Guide to Planning Field Trips

A white bear in a water tank in front of two kids

For teachers and administrators, planning a successful field trip can be challenging and stressful. However, allowing students to learn hands-on provides educators new ways to introduce learning material and valuable experiences beyond textbooks. Use this guide to create a plan ahead of time to aid the decision process for future excursions.

Destination Learning

Consider what’s currently being taught in the classroom and brainstorm ideas for potential opportunities to bring it to life. For example, an environmental science class could benefit from a trip into nature. Visiting a state or national park will help drive connections between the discussions in class about various species and their habitats in the real world. For any subject, try to include immersive activities to appeal to different types of learners.

Communication With Parents

After securing a location, permission slips detailing the future trip should be sent home to parents in advance. A good rule of thumb is to require a parent or guardian’s contact information in case of an emergency. The phone numbers on file with the school may not be up to date, so it’s a good way to ensure that an adult can be reached if needed. It’s also not a bad idea to request chaperones; parents will have a chance to share the fun with their child and also watch them learn. In addition, chaperones can assist teachers with keeping track of students during the trip.

Organization

Developing a schedule helps with breaking up time to keep students intrigued and eager for the next activity. It can also provide a guide for chaperones in case their group gets off track. Specify times and locations to ensure that students arrive at designated places safely. Including planned breaks is another good measure to keep students attentive and gives organizers time to plan for the journey back to school.

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