JMJ 33 *Field trips are an awesome perk for homeschoolers. Not restricted to the twice a year norm of many public schools, field trips can be taken as often as desired. In our family, we try to include field trips as part of our curriculum, at least a couple of times a month. Not only are the trips educational and social for the kids, but moms and dads as well.
Ring the School Bell 33/180 days
After feeling a bit down yesterday, a field trip sounded fantastic. Field trips are rejuvenating, educational, and so much fun. And they have built-in chaperones, unlike my classroom teaching days, when I absolutely dreaded field trips. The school would pack three classrooms in a bus, that is 99 kids total, leaving room for only a few extra parent helpers. Instead of enjoying the trip, I would spend the entire time counting my “ducklings”, to make certain I would not leave anyone behind with the bears or gorillas at the zoo!
So today, we put our books aside, and along with our little friends, Sophia and Carolina, enjoyed a production of the Wizard of Oz Ballet at the restored El Portal Theater in North Hollywood.
It was easy to forget our cares and responsibilities to enjoy time with Toto and Dorothy. The cast was made up of ballet students ranging from 5 to 18 years of age. What fun! We called it a day after stopping to enjoy pizza on the way home.
Through the years, we have participated in well over 100 field trips, ranging from such diverse outings as a tour of a bagel factory to a cochlear implant production facility. It is important to note that I have not planned all of these myself! How to plan a year’s worth of field trip fun? Here is what our group does every year:
- At the beginning of each school year, the moms in our group gather in someone’s home, and delegate out every month’s activities. We make it a relaxed gathering, without the little ones, unless they are nursing babies. It can be hard, I know, to leave the rest of the bunch behind, but that is how we can be more efficient with the year’s planning. Also, the uninterrupted camaraderie is very nice.
- After socializing a bit, we get down to the business of planning out the events of the school year. We choose the park days, as well as the activity days, delegating each month to a couple of moms. It works out lovely. After brainstorming ideas of where we would like to go for the year, we allow the mom in charge of that month, to choose the destination. Many times we will tag on a social event, such as a picnic, after the field trip. Not sure where to go on a field trip? Do what my friend Kristi did. Kristi wasn’t sure what to choose and so blindly opened up a yellow pages directory and let her gaze fall where it may. That is how we ended up visiting a cochlear implant manufacturer, a most amazing educational field trip!
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** Note to the Reader- Today’s narrative is part of our family’s school journey from a few years ago, during my eldest daughter’s senior year in high school, a rather emotional year, with its many ups and downs. Every day’s blog entry coincides with a day from that special year. It can be read from the beginning by selecting the “Ring the School Bell 180” category on the side bar. Commence with the narrative, “The School Bell- What comes to mind when ‘you’ hear that bell?” and follow along with us day-by-day through the school year. Hope you will join us!
May God shower blessings on your family as he has on mine. Annette