Field Trip Destination
The destination of the proposed trip is the Buffalo Museum of Science, 1020 Humboldt Parkway, Buffalo NY 14211.
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The trip is meant for a group of 20 students who attend the 6th grade; it is going to complement their social studies (SS) exploration of civilizations and cultures. It will consist of three parts: a guided tour, an unguided exploration, and a workshop “Civilizations.” The Museum’s tours and workshops are customizable (“Educators” para. 2). In particular, the Civilizations workshop that is suitable for the 6th grade and corresponds to the NYS requirement for an SS class allows choosing up to three civilizations to study (“Educator’s Guide 2015-2015” 4).
As a result, it is proposed that the students vote for the specific cultures that they wish to explore. The guided tour will focus on the Artifacts exhibit that is aimed at exploring “the similarities across cultures, as evidenced by the objects we create” (“Artifacts” par. 1). The exhibit uses touch screen technology to enhance the experience and hands-on activities for improved engagement.
The need for a guided trip is explained by the fact that unguided ones are less effective in directing the students’ attention and producing learning outcomes (Morris 68-70). However, the advantage of an unguided trip consists of the encouragement of exploration, which, combined with feedback provided by the chaperones and during the workshop, will ensure a comprehensive experience.
Alignment to NYS SS Framework
Apart from the fact that the tours and workshops correspond to New York State (NYS) SS requirements, the proposed trip can be regarded as one aligned with the NYS SS Framework (“Educator’s Guide 2015-2015” 4). It is going to integrate the themes 1, 2, 3, and 5: those related to cultural identity, diversity, varied aspects of culture, history and event reconstruction and interpretation, and the development of social structures. Apart from that, the trip will be designed to correspond to the content focus on the Eastern Hemisphere that NYS SS framework recommends for the 6th grade (The State Education Department and the University of the State of New York 11-13). In order to achieve this, the civilizations for the trip will be chosen from the Eastern Hemisphere.
Apart from that, the State Education Department and the University of the State of New York suggest the direction in SS instruction improvement, and the proposed trip corresponds to it: it provides students with unconventional sources for SS investigation that are thought-provoking and inspiring (New York State K-12 Social Studies Field Guide 8).
Learning Experience PRIOR to Field Trip
- The concepts of civilization, culture, as well as history and anthropology, will be reviewed to provide the context.
- The chosen civilizations will be briefly reviewed.
- In a discussion, the students will reveal the knowledge they already have that is related to the civilizations.
Learning Experience DURING the field trip
- Participation in the guided tour: discourses of the chosen civilizations.
- The workshop: an interactive (hands-on) learning experience that involves exploring the chosen civilizations and comparing various aspects of their culture.
- Unguided exploration. May include the use of interactive exhibition opportunities, discussions.
Learning Experience AFTER the Field Trip
- Students will discuss the information gained to integrate it into the SS course.
- Students will share and discuss their experiences and impressions.
- Students will write short essays about the trip and their experiences and impressions.
- Students will provide group reports and presentations about each of the chosen civilizations.
The museum’s working hours are 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM. The guided tour and the workshop can both take up to 90 minutes. According to Google maps, the travel to the museum can take up to 1 hour 30 minutes. As a result, it is suggested that the tour is booked for 11 AM: this way no time shortage will be experienced. The departure time, therefore, should be around 10:20 AM. From 11 AM to around 12:30, the students will participate in a guided tour. After that, they will have lunch and a break, during which they will have the opportunity to explore the artifacts on their own. They will attend the workshop from 1:45 PM to 3:15 PM. At 3:30 PM, the children will be heading back.
The Sweet Home Bus District will provide the bus; the children can pack their lunch at home. The suggested number of chaperones is two: one per every ten students.
Student Selection Guidelines
The main eligibility criteria are the approval of the parents and the children’s willingness. Both are also concerned with defining the presence/absence of the parts of the trip and choosing civilizations. The students who are not allowed to attend will be provided with reading materials and tasks related to the topic.
The pre-booked guided tours in the museum cost $9 per student. The workshops cost $10 per student. One chaperone per every ten students is allowed in for free. Apart from that, every additional supervisor pays $6 (“Educator’s Guide 2015-2015” 8). Finally, $2.00 per student is necessary for the busing service, which means that the trip costs $21 per student. Also, the children would be expected to pack the lunch, which can be considered an additional cost. The funding would be expected to come from the district and parents.
“Artifacts.” Buffalo Museum of Science Website. Buffalo Museum of Science, n.d. Web.
“Educator’s Guide 2015-2015.” Buffalo Museum of Science Website. Buffalo Museum of Science, 2015. Web.
“Educators.” Buffalo Museum of Science Website. Buffalo Museum of Science, n.d. Web.
Morris, Rebecca. “Transforming a Field Trip into an Expedition: Supporting Active Research and Science Content through a Museum Visit.” Science Scope 35.5 (2012): 68-73. ProQuest. Web.
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The State Education Department, and the University of the State of New York. New York State K-12 Social Studies Field Guide. The State Education Department, and the University of the State of New York, n.d.
The State Education Department, and the University of the State of New York. New York State K-12 Social Studies Framework. The State Education Department, and the University of the State of New York, 2014.