Monday, June 25, 2012

Early Grammar Stage Focus - Field Trips

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This is part seven of my series based on the article 10 Things To Do With Your Child Before Age 10.  To learn more about what I am doing, read my first post on Reading and Writing.

You can get this "10 things..." article plus SO much more information in the book Teaching the Trivium from the good people at Trivium Pursuit.

This week's focus is on Field Trips.


What a fun topic!  Some of my best memories of elementary school are from field trips.  Children are not designed to sit still for hours on end, they need to explore and discover and MOVE!  Field trips are an excellent way to accomplish this.  The article I mentioned above recommends taking your young children to concerts, plays, museums, fairs, etc.  They also share the great idea of having your child visit workplaces.  What little boy is not fascinated with a fire hall, or going to their daddy's office? 

We take field trips, but they are more along the lines of the zoo, the cider mill, nature walks, etc.  I think that they have suited my 3 year old well, but I see the merit in expanding these opportunities over the next few years as he gets older.  I will have to pay attention to see what things are available in my community...maybe a play of a children's book, a concert in the park, or a tour of the fire hall.  What are some places that you have taken your children to?  Where do you look to find opportunities in your community?

The author of the article also stresses visiting the library (weekly if possible!)  They say to get your child familiar with the layout of the library and where the different types of books are kept.  Your child can watch you look up where to find a book in the (computer) catalog and soon enough be able to do it them selves.  Then they can follow you around as you search for the right isle and shelf to find the book on.  Once again, they will pick up quickly and soon be able to scurry off to find their own books!  We go to the library from time to time, but honestly it is not my favorite place to go.  My children would rather just play with the toys that they have setting out, or play games on the computer.  These are fine things to do, but in my opinion they are not what we go to the library for.  I guess I'll just have to work on that and explain that we can do those other things after we find some books (or something like that).  How do you handle these fun distractions at your library (assuming yours is like mine =) ? 

The article also talks about buying hands on things for your child to use at home.  It really isn't field trip related, but I guess the point of all of this is having your child DO instead of watch.  Check out the article to see what else they say about that.

Goals for field trips:

  1. Go on at least one field trip a month (possibly related to the time period we are studying in history).
  2. Find other opportunities than the standard outings we are used to.
    1. concert
    2. play
    3. museum
    4. other???
  3. Go to the library at least once a month, and actually look at books!


To see how we've done on these goals. check out my follow up post Field Trips Re-Visited.


This post is a part of the following series:



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2 comments:

  1. I might add in there local state and federal parks. I know when we lived in Wyoming,especially, it was an absolute treasure trove of field trips! When we studied pictographs, we were able to go see thousand year old Native American carvings and drawings in cliffs. What a way to make history come alive!! Devil's Tower and the history behind the name, Mount Rushmore... all sorts of living history all around us! I know that if we just scratch the surface, most areas would probably have their own treasures, free, and waiting to be found!

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    Replies
    1. Great idea! Sort of like the ultimate nature walk =)

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