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Fun and educational field trips are hard to come by, so many schools stick to the same plan every year: go to the art museum, walk around and return to class. If you’re tired of the same old same old, there’s a good chance your students are, too. Why not switch things up and visit someplace new?
Trade the boring annual trip to the art museum for a visit to one of these field trip ideas middle school kids will love. Odds are you’ll all learn something new along the way.
1. Tour a Recycling Plant
There are 6.3 billion tons of plastic waste in the world, and only 9% of it has been recycled. The rest inevitably ends up in landfills and the natural environment where it destroys animal habitats and wildlife populations.
Teach your students all about the dangers of plastic — and how to personally reduce plastic waste — by visiting a recycling center. How can reducing and reusing help the planet? What items can they put in their recycling bins at home? Find out firsthand at a plant near you.
2. Volunteer at a Community Garden
You don’t need a green thumb to volunteer at a community garden. In fact, jobs like weeding, mulching and harvesting are so easy that a middle schooler can do them. Perfect!
Head on over to your local plot and lend a hand any way you can. Discuss everything from community involvement to plant life cycles with your students while you work. Perhaps you can dissect and taste-test a few specimens when you return to the classroom.
3. Explore an Interactive Museum
Many students struggle to connect with paintings and sculptures, especially when they have to view them from a distance. Luckily, there are plenty of hands-on museums all over the country that provide a more interactive experience.
Get up close and personal with famous works of art or tap into their creative side with drawing, painting and sculpting workshops. Whatever your interactive museum has to offer, it’s sure to engage and entertain students of all ages.
4. See a Movie
Whether you’re reading the novel “White Bird” or a classic tale like “Pinocchio,” this is the year to see them on the big screen. These and other book-to-movie adaptations are set to release in 2022. However, you can just as easily enjoy older ones like “Gone with the Wind” and “The Lord of the Rings.”
Head to the theater for a matinee showing or view a late-night showing to really infuse your class with excitement. Discuss the differences between the book and film and recount the plot to reinforce concepts some students might have missed. The promise of seeing the movie may also inspire students to finish the book faster and with more enthusiasm, which can boost reading and comprehension skills.
Experiential Education for the Win
Field trips tend to have a more long-standing effect on students than a traditional classroom lecture. In fact, nearly 55% of teachers say that student trips can improve kids’ academic performance and complement the existing curriculum. They also report positive effects on group morale and bonding.
Make a lasting impression on your students and invest in their academic success by planning an unforgettable field trip. If you think outside the box and lean into learning, you’re sure to choose field trip ideas middle school kids and you kids will love.