Students love adventures at every age. If your kindergarten student is getting ready for a first class outing, or your middle school student is preparing for a class trip, you may want to look at the advice below to prepare your child for the best possible experience.
Student excursions are important for intellectual and emotional development. Unfortunately, as this article from The Atlantic states, the fact is that fewer students are being given the opportunity to experience them, and that is very bad news for education.
This study by Jay Greene, a professor of education reform at the University of Arkansas, backs up the value of field trips, specifically live theater, and supports the idea that students should be have more of these types of experiences, not less.
If your child’s school program includes field trips, there are several ways that you can help to support your child’s positive experience.
Here are eight tips for making your child’s visit more positive:
Have your child plan what he or she will wear the night before. Have the clothing, lunch or lunch money, and any special documents ready the night before.
A calm routine the night before the trip will help your child mentally prepare. Getting enough rest can make a big difference in your child's attitude while on the visit.
Talk to your child about appropriate behavior for the trip. There are specific do's and don’ts in museums and theater performances. Make sure that your child understands the rules before heading out for the experience.
- Double check the school policy. Are electronics allowed? Are children asked to wear a specific type of clothing or a uniform? Please make sure that your child is complying with any requests to minimize delays on the day of the adventure.
- Find out if your child needs any money. If they are given the opportunity to buy snacks or souvenirs, make sure that they bring along the appropriate amount. Sending children with too much money is as bad as too little, so please pay attention to the suggested amount for the trip.
- After the trip, ask your child questions about the day. Talking about the experiences will cement them in your child’s mind and memory. Students may remember their field trip experience for years to come, and a short conversation about the day will help them to remember what is most important.
- Talk to your child about the connection with his or her curriculum. Making connections to the classroom will bring lessons to life for your child, and it will make time spent in the classroom more fun.
- Students grow through experience, and there are times when getting out of the classroom is the most effective way to learn. The key to making these excursions successful is preparation. Hands-on learning can be quite meaningful and exciting for children, as long as he or she is well prepared ahead of time. If your child has been on a field trip, you may have valuable advice for other parents. Please share your own field trip advice in the comments below.