Stress Free Field Trip Tips

Field Trip Tips | Super charge your field trips with these free planners | #homeschool #podcast #fieldtrips Stress Buster – Field Trip Tips 304

We’ve all been on field trips that were disasters. Taking kids who are excited, no matter what the age on a trip can be an unforgettable activity. Now add the stress of planning, packing lunch and all the things that go with it, and well…it is a fiasco waiting to happen. In this episode, we will tackle so tried and true techniques to make stressful field trips a thing of the past.

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As a kid I loved field trips, they were the highlight of our year – and they can be for your kids and your family with some of these tips. As with anything, it takes some planning –but with a little help, you can incorporate field trips into your homeschool curriculum.

One of the keys to a successful field trip is to know what you are getting out of the effort. I think we stress when we feel like we packed up the kids, drove to a destination, unpacked the kids and our stuff, trudged around or paid money to trudge around and got nothing out of the effort.

A good field trip is:

  1. The kids are prepared.
    1. They know where you are going.
    2. What is expected. Is this a long nature walk, a museum or a visit to the fire station, etc.
    3. They have a camera, or access to one, something to write or draw with.
    4. Know they must be on their best behavior
  2. The moms and dads:
    1. Bathroom visit before you leave home.
    2. Packed snacks or lunch
    3. Have a cameral or cell phone for pictures (charged!)
    4. Have a way to record by writing, taking pictures, pictures of signs or plaques, and gathering information to ask the kids later.
    5. Go over field trip etiquette with the kids. Remember no running, wait for you or ask permission to walk with friends, listen if someone is a guide or explaining, no talking unless necessary.

Where do I begin?

Planning a field trip doesn’t have to be a marathon, in other words, more isn’t always better. Try to join a local homeschool support group in your area, or look at the local events planner to see what is happening in your town.

I have supplied some of the field trips forms I used myself in my homeschool days – here is a few of the forms I used Field Trip Guide

Be sure to subscribe to the Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network mailing list to receive this type of planning guide each month in 2018! This guide is also available on the Media Angels Membership website.

Having these forms is a stress buster! I can use these lists to plan for field trips as well. Included in the following pages is a list of topic related field trips ideas and lists to get you started. Feel free to make your own and use these as a starting point.

Where to go?

What are you studying? That should give you a good idea of where to begin. Are you studying astronomy? The nature centers usually have a planetarium or star-gazing night program. Are you studying anatomy? A field trip to a local hospital or doctors office could be arranged. You may also wish to use doctors appointments as field trips. If your children are having routine teeth cleaning you can turn this into a trip by reading some literature about dental hygiene, good health, etc. before your visit. The same with the Vet’s office and pet care.

Field Trips on a Budget:

Begin by looking for free events or those charging a minimal fee. Usually, group rate discounts are the way to go. Gathering a group of 10 or more students is normally very easy to do. In our support group that would amount to one family! Seriously, many times all it takes is a few calls to gather a group of people interested in banding together for a trip.

Does it have to tie into your curriculum?

We try to plan our field trips to coincide with the topics we are currently studying.

Yet, that isn’t always possible. What then? Use the field trips as a bonus to review an already learned topic or to introduce a topic you plan to study in the future. For example, there is a local group that sponsors missionaries and teaches them how to plan food in foreign countries. We didn’t go to the last two field trips at this facility, but plan on going the next time it is offered (or going ourselves as volunteers) as we are currently planting a garden. It wasn’t a topic of interest when it was offered so we didn’t attend.

Be creative and take lots of pictures or have the children draw or notebook their activity once you arrive home. Don’t take all of the enjoyment out of every trip by requiring a full length article or term paper. (Unless your children love that sort of thing!) Remember, you are building memories and what better way than spending time with your children.

 


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