Thursday, June 9, 2016

Park Field Trips

Trips a local park can be a lot of fun and totally educational. We took our entire school, grades K-8, to a park that has a hummingbird trail, a pond and a castle. We had a lot of fun, but we also put in a lot of work.

I had a bit more work than anyone else. I went to the park before the trip. I took pictures of many things around the park. When I made it back to my classroom, I downloaded the pictures and made a different scavenger hunt for each child. As we took a walk through the park, the students would try to find all the things on the list. This made them more active, more attentive as we wound through the trail. The pictures included the life found on the trail as well as man-made items.

Because we are a Christian school, when we were at one of the ramadas on the trail, we had a Bible activity. We stopped and broke up into groups mixing the younger students with the older students. Each group chose a paper with a Bible story written on it. They went off into little groups and planned out their story. They had a lot of fun acting out the different stories and guessing what story each group was sharing.

P.E. was pretty simple. The castle involves climbing, sliding, balancing, etc. We watched as the kids did what kids need to do. They chased each other, played hide and seek, pushed each other on swings and other totally unmanuscripted fun.

We went to the river that borders the park. Along the edge, we looked for insects and, when we found them, learned how to respect life, regardless of the form. I did this because we really do not see a lot of insects in our area-outside of gnats, flies, ants and the occasional scorpion. We were able to observe the Burrowing owl habitats.

Follow up activities allow students to write, draw and tell about different things the kids learned while at school the next day. Other activities that we did not get to involved testing the water in the pond, bird watching and comparing what we observed and finding natural habits. Of course, there is always next year!

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