Field Trips

Ah, it’s that magical time of the year when field trips are a necessary addition to the celebration that becomes the end of the year. Truthfully, I’m excited. Since March Break, I’ve been in high plan mode, trying to find the perfect balance between educational and curriculum tied, and fun. I think I’ve hit the magic combo.We’ll be going to the Dionne Quints Museum, as well as the Canadian Ecology Centre. Of course, we’ll be travelling to North Bay and Mattawa to make this trip happen. It’s a charged day, and I’ve been laughed at for the over-reach of this field trip: leaving at 8am and coming back at 5pm with a group of thirty-five 8-9 year olds will be no easy feat. However, this reason is two fold: 1) this is the first field trip that we’ve been able to go on all year, and the kids are just so good and we’ve had such an amazing year together that I wanted to reward them for all of their hard work and dedication in our classroom, and 2) it ties so nicely into our curriculum that I had a difficult time passing it up.

The Dionne Quints Museum is a wonderful opportunity to look at a genuine turn of the century house. I had been looking for something that was accomodating to third graders in terms of pioneers, which trust me, is no easy feet. There were many half-day programs that were accessible, but then, we had nothing to busy our afternoons with. What would we do for our afternoon? How would we travel as far as Barrie for just a morning thing? This is how the Dionne Quint Museum comes in. From North Bay, Mattawa is easily accessible (and the Canadian Ecology Centre is going to be fun fun fun!) and all of a sudden, we have something worthwhile to do in the afternoon. But also, I was fascinated that because it’s a turn of the century house, it seems to be closer somehow, like our grandparents may have lived similar lives. When the kids picture pioneers, their vision is closer to these homes, and we’ve discussed it a lot. I think they’re going to be fascinated. Also, let’s face it: as a total history nerd, I’ve always wanted to go to the Dionne Quint Museum. Their story has always fascinated me. I read their biography as a teenager. I’m also excited to see how they lived. And I’m sure the kids will love it.

After the museum, we go to the Canadian Ecology Centre, to participate in soil and environmental activities, and we threw in an extra fun activity about animals, because my 3rd graders are animal obssessed. They’ve been amazing to deal with. I’ve been speaking with Chris, and he’s just been so organized and so helpful. I’m so looking forward to going out there and learning with them. I went when I was a kid, and I remember having a blast. Between my fond memories, and their great activities and programs that they offer, it’s a no brainer! And I know that my students will have a blast. We will be participating in a soil ecology program, an animal ecology program and an environmental crafts program. All of this ties beautifully into our science curriculum. We actually only finished our soil program several weeks ago, while the ground was still frozen, so I’m looking forward to the students being able to actually interact with soil in a way that we were not able to at the time.

It’s going to be such a wonderful trip.

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