One of the more fun advantages of homeschooling to me is that we can go on field trips as a family. And one of the ways I like to get prepared for my school year is to plan out some of our upcoming field trips.
People do field trips for differing reasons. Some use fieldtrips to compliment their subjects, some to celebrate specific holidays or events, and some to just get out of the house. Regardless of why you put field trips into your school year, having some pre-planned can help you once the year gets off to a roaring start.
Here are some of the fieldtrips we like to take:
We like to do fieldtrips that correspond with what we are studying. So I like to schedule at least 2 each year to go along with our studies. I usually find something historical and something in science and then plan those field trips out.
We also like to plan a couple of specific community field trips like visiting a firehouse or police station.
We like to plan one nature field trip like pumpkin or apple picking in the fall and one in the spring like a nature hike or visit to a national park.
We like to plan one museum trip per semester so I plan these according to the exhibit schedules.
We like to plan one arts related field trip so I look to see if there are kid friendly art exhibits, kid musical performances during the day, or orchestra petting zoo trips in our local area.
I like to look at the Parks and Recreation schedule in my local area and see if there is anything we haven’t done lately or something that looks especially interesting for the age of my children like maple syrup tapping or mother-daughter teas.
There are literally a million field trips you could take so I do tend to be choosey. But I love to get something that is interesting to all my children and that we all can enjoy and learn something about. We are wiling to travel up to 2 hours for a field trip if its something unique and I tend to watch in nearby communities for good deals as well. If you are willing to plan, you can keep an ear out and find some great opportunities for the whole family.
Advantages of pre planning your fields trips:
You can plan appropriate field trips around the seasons or weather
You can look for coupons or discounts if necessary
You can ask others to accompany you if you want a group discount or would like some company
You can ask your husband to go and he has time to plan to take off work
You can plan your school days expecting to take that day off
You have some ideas on the schedule should you determine at the last minute that you and the kids need a day out of the house
You can look up information about the field trip location ahead of time so you can prepare yourself and the kids and get the most out of the trip
You can budget for them if necessary
Do not overburden our schedule with field trips; you can over schedule yourself and feel like you are just running around all the time. Be leery of more than one per month. We try to do one every other month but sometimes we have some that end up being within 30 days of each other, especially during the holiday season.
Decide what is best for your schedule but even if you only do two field trips a year, having them pre planned and on the schedule can help take last minute planning and preparation off you plate and make it easier to enjoy the field trip when it arrives on your schedule.
This year we are looking forward to a fieldtrip to a local windmill farm. They only offer field trips in November and March so…we are heading there in March this year. We are also looking forward to a youth orchestra performance in my mother’s home town so we will be including her and having a great time during our time when we study the orchestra. We missed apple picking last year so we will be heading to a new apple orchard this fall for a fun tour and an apple sampling. This is just a few of my planned field trips this year.
Do you preplan your field trips? What are you looking forward to this year?