I remember public school days. We looked forward to that one field trip a year. The trip was most likely to the zoo or museum. It was the best school day ever. All the kids looked forward to it. We were away from school, no work, no homework, and we got to hang out with friends. I am sure I, and every other child, wished we could do it more often.
Well, public school days are over. Your children no longer have to wait on that once-a-year field trip that was only about 2-3 hours at the actual site. The poor teachers did what they could do with the time they had, but YOU are the school teacher now.
Homeschooling allows us the freedom to mold the learning environment in the best way we see fit. We aren’t limited to one field trip a year anymore, but many times we are trying to find ways to do the most with very little.
Thankfully, there are a zillion resources out there to help you homeschool that won’t cost an arm and leg. Field trips are just the same. Who wouldn’t want a field trip to Disney or Sea World!? We all would, but that is just not feasible for most of us. Even a trip to the movie theater can set a large family back at times. Here are a few ideas for you to maintain frugality and still have awesome field trips with the kids at little to no cost.
1. Visit the local Library
Some local libraries are really beautiful and some, not so much. I put this one as my first (and favorite) because my kids love going to the library. With the internet and devices like Kindles readily available, visiting a library is an experience no device can match. The kids can interview a librarian or listen to a book reading. They can learn how to search for books and more.
2. Have an adventure at a Museum
Visiting a museum might be a given, but you can totally plan out exactly what you want to see there and when. You can search for schedules online beforehand so kids can pick and choose what they want to see and in what order. Their experience can begin even before they get to the museum.
3. Explore the Aquarium or Zoo
The same for a museum is true for Zoos and Aquariums. Let the kids go online and see what they want to view first. You can organize a scavenger hunt in a zoo as well. There are many places that give homeschooler discounts or have certain times of the year that are cheaper than others. Search early in the year, make some phone calls, and see what date will suit your homeschool best (aaaaah, the freedom of homeschooling).
4. Does your town have a Historical Society?
Local historical societies are FULL of information from your area that your kids will enjoy. Your kids can discover what landmarks are around the area and read about historical figures that once walked the very streets they do!
5. Nature walks at the Park
Many state parks are absolutely free. Give a set time for you and your kids to have a nature walk. Then you can let them play until their heart’s content. Your kids can grab a notebook and list all the birds they saw, what type of trees they walked under, and anything else you can think of to get their minds going.
Just in this post alone, there are 5 different field trips you can take with your homeschool or group of family homeschoolers. Just in those 5 field trips, you can develop science, math, history, writing, or nature lessons galore. Homeschool field trips do not have to cost a dime and they can deliver just as much or even more learning encounters than your homeschool curriculum.
Surprising your kids with field trips are the best! They truly are a treat and can be made into the most wonderful learning experiences and memories.
Jeannette is a wife, mother and homeschooling mom. She has been mightily, saved by grace and is grateful for God’s sovereignty throughout her life’s journey. She has a Bachelor in English Education and her MBA. Jeannette is bi-lingual and currently lives in the Tongan Islands of the South Pacific. She posts daily freebies for homeschoolers!
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