Are you planning a field trip for your fifth grade class? Kids love field trips! They are exciting, fun and allow them to be creative. Sometimes it can be tough to come up with ideas for your students, especially if you are planning a trip for fifth graders. Some of your students may be very interested in music, others interested in sports, and some like to be active outside. With all the options, you need to make sure you plan a field trip that will interest your whole class. Here are five field trip ideas for a fifth grade class.
1. State Capitol (Historical Field Trip)
One of the many field trips fifth grade students love is seeing local history live in action! Give students a tour of your local county courthouse. Show them the civil courtrooms and historical records on display. Students learn about their history while learning about history in general.
Ask kids what they think the state capitol building looks like, it is not hard to guess what most kids think (a big white building with columns), but often that is not the case! Be sure to point out the various parts of the capitol building, including the court chamber, where politics happen in real life!
When I brought my fifth graders to Boston, we saw the State House, walked the freedom trail, and saw the location of the Boston Tea Party! The rest of the history lessons were so much more engaging! The kids were able to bring history to life by seeing the sites in person. Each state has so much history, and it is so valuable to see it in person!
The aquarium experience is an interactive, hands-on way to learn about animals, ecosystems, and much more. If you are looking to teach kids about science, an aquarium is a great place to start. It has an open environment that is easy for kids to explore and see things they may not otherwise see in the classroom. One fun idea is to have the students bring science notebooks and answer some questions! Some questions could be as follows. What kind of fish do you think would be likely to live in the ocean? Are there any species of fish that need saltwater or freshwater? If you were an ocean animal, what animal would you be?
I love the shows, hands-on activities, and beautiful sites an aquarium has to offer! Fifth graders love to see penguins, seals, sharks, and more! The aquarium is a valuable activity for cross-curricular activities to combine science and writing! You can have students write about their favorite animal that they saw.
3. Science Museum
The science museum is one of the field trips fifth grade students will remember for years! The Science Museum is where fifth graders can be kids, stretching their imagination and learning about science, technology, and engineering. The science museum is one of the most popular field trips for fifth graders. In science class, students learn about fossils, geology, meteorology, astronomy, and more. A visit to the museum can allow students to learn more about these topics without being too intense or too difficult for them.
If you can find a science museum with a planetarium, that is an additional bonus! A planetarium is an educational tool that projects stars and other celestial objects onto a dome-shaped screen. The dome can be transparent or made of glass or other materials, and the images it projects can be either static or animated. The planetarium is a sensory experience every bit as much as it is a learning tool. The planetarium has lots of hands-on activities for fifth graders, such as putting on 3-D glasses or exploring space the way they see it through telescopes and binoculars.
Fifth graders are at the perfect age to enjoy theater more than any other grade level because the kids are still learning how to evaluate what they see on stage. Students are still curious about what happens next, and they love props and costumes. Have a show that relates to the book. Students want to see books they read come alive on stage. They love seeing characters they know in the stories come alive on stage; they leave with a feeling of amazement. Theater often has shows related to the books they read at school, so check to see what shows are playing when your students read the books.
I once brought my class to a showing of Mr. Popper’s Penguins! We read the book as a class, and they were able to see it performed on stage! I had a writing assignment with the play and a science lesson on penguins the next day back in the classroom. The class loved the show!
Fifth grade students love going to the farm! Farm visits are great ways to teach kids about where their food comes from, how it grows, and what happens while the food is sitting on the shelf at the grocery store. Kids love to see the animals and often learn much more from seeing them than reading about them in a book or a website. The best farms have a petting zoo, a hayride, and a tour of the land. Many have a restaurant where you can sit down and eat a meal made from the freshest ingredients. If you can’t find a local farm, many offer overnight trips for kids. Schools usually take their students on field trips to the farm during the fall to see what happens before winter comes. If you live up north, you may see how chickens lay eggs or cows get milked. In warmer climates, kids might get to go fishing or pick fruits and vegetables from trees.
I brought my students on a farm field trip. In class, leading up to the field trip, some students were not excited to go and wanted to stay indoors. Once they were on the farm, everything changed! The fifth graders had a blast! The students loved the hayride and apple picking. There were so many activities to pick from, so make sure to research all the different activities local farms offer!
Organizing a field trip may not be an easy process, but doing it is fun. Other than the obvious benefits, it builds trust between teachers, administrators and parents.
Typically, in the beginning of the school year field trips are required to include some kind of academic relevance to the curriculum.
Field Trips are an adventure all their own. Teachers plan the day with activities and often as an extension from a particular unit in the curriculum.