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Taking a field trip with students can be a stressful experience. No matter how well you’re prepared, there’s always the chance of something going awry. Missing permission slips, forgotten lunches, bus mishaps, and breaches in museum etiquette: all bets are off once you’re out of the classroom.
One thing that can focus student behavior is having specific tasks for students to complete once you get to your location. This gives students personalized roles making them feel important and also keeping them engaged. In addition, students can compile their information when you get back to school for a meaningful sharing and discussion session.
Make sure that you provide students with a basic outline of where they’re going and what they might see there. Call the venue and see if there are any interesting stories you can use to hook your kids. If you’re going to see specific pieces, be sure your students will be able to recognize them by doing some introductory activities. Is there a chance your students will see nudity? Here are two articles to help you out!
There are many different roles that you can assign to students. What makes this method so fun is having students capture the field trip experience in different ways.
Here are 7 roles to get you started.
During the next class period with students, have them team up with others who had the same roles to compare results. Then, have the “Deep Thinkers” start a discussion about the field trip with some of their questions. Other groups can chime in with evidence they’ve gathered to support their thoughts.
Running a field trip in this way makes the experience much more enjoyable for everyone. The students are highly engaged and much less likely to be rowdy or cause trouble. Plus, students have a chance to bring back pieces of the trip to the classroom in order to dive a bit deeper. I guarantee this type of experience will be one that students don’t forget!
What kinds of things do you have students do while on field trips?
Do you have any other creative ideas about roles you could give students?