Unschooling Mommas

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"Children do not need to learn to be better, told what to do or shown how. If they are given access to enough of the world, they will see clearly enough what things are truly important to themselves and to others, and they will make for themselves a better path into that world than anyone else could make for them." John Holt

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                                 Field Trip Ideas

Alot of our best learning has taken place when we took the time to venture out into the world. I have lived in both large cities and small towns, have had money and struggled to survive and I can tell you that learning opportunities are out there no matter where you find yourself. Here I have compiled a list of 40 field trip ideas to get you started.

1. Grocery Stores (ask if you can schedule a tour.) Do you have an ethnic grocery store in your area? If not you can still involve children in the shopping, weighing fruit, comparing prices, checking out, the list goes on and on.

2. Fire Station

3. Police Station

4. Mayors Office or City Council (we wrote our mayor several years ago and he gave us a personal tour of city hall and his office and described his job to us.)

5. Postal Office (again, ask for a tour) visit and have child mail a letter, and explain how the u.s. mail system works

6. Science/Nature Museums (many offer annual passes) losts of interactive and hands on excitement

7. History Museums, great way to get kids excited about history, many cities over free ones pertaining to your state

8. Visit a Historical site or birthplace

9. zoos, great way to learn about animals and habitats

10. aquariums, learn about marine animals and habitats

11. Pet Store, observe animals, fish, and birds (ask when feeding time is, allow kids to ask questions to workers)

12. Nature trails, check local parks, if none in your area take a hike in the woods to explore local plants and animals

13. National and State Parks, opportunities ranging from historical battlefields to guided nature walks

14. Art Museum, learn about artists and different types of art

15. Tour a local factory or business, we have toured candy factories and even had a behind the scenes at our local bowling alley

16. Farmers Market, learn where food comes from, try something new, some offer foods from different cultures

17. Airport, I know security is high but if you live near a smaller airport many will still allow you to observe the planes

18. Library, check out books, dvd, and games. Many offer free educational programs and story times

19. Farms or Orchards, pick your own fruit, see where your food comes from, ask a local farmer to let your child help with farm chores for the day

20. Animal Shelter or Humane Society, some have insurance restrictions for under 18 but others we have walked, fed, and brushed the cats and dogs

21. Art Stores, many art stores like Micheals or Hobby Lobby offer free arts and crafts projects several times a month

22. Home Improvement Stores, explore the different aisles and let them become curious, take on a small home improvement project, some offer free building clinics for kids monthly

23. Theatre, watch a play, wether it be from a large company, children's theatre, or college students

24. Cemetary, some are quite old and offer a wealth of history by studying the old stones of soldiers in battlefield, etc.

25. State Capitol. Great chance to learn how the government works

26. Planetarium, great guided tour of the galaxy, many found inside of science museums

27. Observatory, many local colleges have a community night where you can look and observe the stars and night sky

28. Symphony, some cities even have free shows for homeschoolers

29. Music store, walk around and explore the different types of instruments

30. Veternarian's office, take your kids when your pet needs their next check up or ask a local vet for a tour and allow them to ask questions and see veternarian equipment

31. Vist a local art studio so kids can see artists blow glass, paint, or sculpt

32. Visit Ballet or local dance performance

33. Attend a live sporting event, basketball, hockey, baseball, football, etc, even if its grade school level

34. Walk around town and explore the different statues and architectural styles of the homes in your area

35. Local TV Station to see a live broadcast or go on a behind the scenes tour

36. Local Radio Station, tour or hear broadcast, meet voices behind the radio

37. Local Newspaper, behind scenes tour, talk to reporter

38. Restaurants, some local and family ones may give a behind the scenes tour, chineese, mexican, or italian restaurants may offer a chance to explore another culture

39. Senior Center or Nursing Home, will probably have to have advance permission but seniors enjoy the company and are a great way to learn history from some one who was there

40. Recycling Plants