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4 field trip tips for teachers

FRIDAY, AUGUST 07, 2015 09:47 AM

Every year, kids get excited about school field trips to parks, zoos and other educational locations. These excursions are also often fun for the teachers, but only if they are prepared properly. Without necessary preparation, school outings can quickly fall into disorder and the learning benefits diminish. To avoid disruptions in these educational activities, make sure you and your class are ready for the trip.

1. Plan for the big day
The key to any successful trip is detailed planning and organization. Be sure to give kids plenty of time to get their permission slips signed and frequently remind them when it's due. If your classroom uses technology, like text messaging or a class website, post reminders through these channels as well.

Keep class activities in mind when you're planning the excursion. Heading to the trip site itself is plenty of fun, but you need to make sure kids are getting something valuable out of their time. To make sure this happens, Education World suggests giving students a list of items to find while on the trip or giving them a list of topics you'll be discussing back in the classroom related to the event. With the information you provide, the children will have an extra incentive for focusing their attention on what a guide is saying.

2. Make the rules clear
Kids are going to be rowdy during a field trip - that's a given - but they need to know the limits. A couple of days before the outing, start letting students know what behavior is expected of them and what the consequences are if they don't behave. Remind them that trips are a privilege they will lose if they abuse them. Emphasize the expectations one more time when you arrive at your destination so your pupils will have them fresh in mind as they start the learning experience.

3. Bring an emergency kit
Accidents happen, especially when little kids in kindergarten are involved, so be ready to deal with any incident. In an emergency kit, Scholastic suggests bringing:

  • Bandages
  • Disinfectant
  • Emergency numbers (parents, school, doctor)
  • Sunscreen
  • Cellphone

4. Reflect on the outing
After everyone is back home, safe and sound, take a few minutes to reflect on the trip. Make some notes about what worked really well and what could use improvement or should be avoided. When you're done, keep this information in a safe place so you can reference it again the next time you plan a field trip.