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Homeschool Field Trips

by Jessica Parnell | Nov 30, 2015 | 4 min read

If you’re a homeschooler, then you understand that seeking creative learning opportunities in the larger world is an integral piece of the learning process.  Homeschool field trips are a wonderful gateway to discovery and exploration and they don’t have to be elaborate or costly to be educational, either.  You can find a variety of inexpensive or free trips for your family and many of them are right in your own backyard.

Field trips are also a wonderful way to instill the value of lifelong learning in your children.  You have the chance to experience and discover new places together and make some wonderful memories along the way.  Sometimes getting out of the house for the day sparks curiosity and gives you a glimpse of inspiration and passion. And for many families, flexibility and field trips help reaffirm why they chose to homeschool in the first place.

If you’re looking for some great ways to help facilitate the learning process, here’s a list of some of our top homeschool field trip ideas to incorporate with your curriculum this year.

  1. Try some field trips that teach your children about the products and services we use on a daily basis.  By exposing them to a wide variety of places, they’ll become more appreciative of what it takes to run a business and produce goods that they use at home.
  2. Pick fruits and vegetables at a local orchard or farm. What better way for your children to enjoy the day than with some honest hard work?  They’ll also have the opportunity to learn about life on a farm, as well as plant life cycles.
  3. Spend an afternoon at a fish hatchery learning about the life cycle and production of fish. Visiting a fish hatchery will allow your children to understand where their food comes from, and it will also teach them about biology.
  4. Learn more about transportation at a railway station or take a train ride of your own.  The railroad is an important aspect of American history.  You can schedule a tour of a railroad station or even buy some tickets and take a ride to experience the rails for yourself.  As part of your homeschool curriculum, you can ask your students to compare the railroad to other modes of travel.
  5.  Think about exploring your local community.  There are enormous opportunities for outings right in your own community.  By taking your children out in their own neighborhoods, they get a chance to see how life works for a variety of different people.
  6. Learn respect for all creatures with a trip to a local animal shelter. Visiting a local animal shelter is a great way to teach your children to respect all creatures, and it might encourage them to think about adopting a pet of their own to care for.
  7. Travel to a local zoo or aquarium. Many zoo’s offer information about each specific animal like demographic, animal family, fun traits!  Have your kids research different types of animals beforehand so that they know what they would like to see. And then you can take it a step further by having them write a paper about their favorite exhibit and any new facts they learned.
  8. See where your water comes from at a water treatment facility. Have you ever wondered where your water comes from?  Then taking a tour of a water treatment plant will tell you.  Visiting a plant will also teach them about the value of their water source. You can even take it a step further and research other countries and how they get clean water.
  9.  Explore the culture of your local community.  Exposing your children to a variety of cultural venues and histories is a great way to encourage their appreciation for both diversity and authenticity.
  10. Study a play performed in a theaterTheater trips are excellent opportunities for showing children what drama is all about.  If you’re working on a unit that covers Shakespeare or a musical, this is a great way to get them out there to see what the famous playwright really wanted to express in his work.
  11. Explore the natural world in a national or state parkVisiting a national or state park is a wonderful way to expose your children to the rich cultural heritage of the natural world.  There are many parks that offer group and student discounts, as well.
  12. Go bird watching to see the birds that call your area home. Bird watching is a great way for your children to get out of the house with a pair of binoculars to learn firsthand about the types, habits and calls of the birds in your area.  You can even do an extension project where you have them make their own bluebird houses, or their own bird seed craft.
  13. Learn more about famous artists at an museum. There’s no better way to learn about the artists who shaped culture and history than by visiting an art museum.  Exploring art work in a local museum is a great way to study across the homeschool curriculum, as well.  You can visit special exhibits and study various time periods in depth.  Many museums also have group prices and special events, as well.
  14. Take a photography outing.  Taking pictures is a great way to encourage children to explore their world through new lenses.  You can take trips to the local park and learn about natural history while you’re at it, and you can also do extension projects such as poetry writing that complements their images.

Want more ideas for Homeschool Field Trips in your area?  Stay tuned for our second blog featuring Virtual Field Trips that the whole family can enjoy!  And don’t forget to follow our blog for the lastest updates and homeschooling tips.

Jessica Parnell
Hello everyone! I’m Jessica Parnell — mom, homeschool evaluator, teacher, and CEO of Bridgeway Academy. In my 20+ years of experience as a homeschool mom and evaluator, I have had the privilege of meeting homeschoolers that take a variety of approaches to their education. It is their many stories and successes that inspire me in my own homeschooling and I love to pass on the knowledge that I have gained from them to other homeschooling families. The one constant that always remains true is that there’s no such thing as a “cookie cutter child.” Each child is fearfully and wonderfully made and as a result, learns and functions differently. It’s our job to ensure that we’re raising each child to fulfill their individual purpose and when we can teach in a way that inspires them, we are on our way to homeschool success. When I’m not writing or teaching my children, I like to ski, write and participate in triathlons. I graduated from Kutztown University with a Bachelor of Science in Education and a Masters in English and I am currently pursuing a degree in Neuroleadership.
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