**I’m disappointed with my title and it’s apparently very important in blog writing. I have to really work on this aspect**
I had the recent pleasure of attending two field trips that were completely different, but equally enjoyable. In enrichment, we occasionally plan off-site field trips to give students a chance to experience real-world education. Elementary and secondary like to work as a team in these circumstances to help with supervision, so even though I attended two trips, they were for completely different subjects and age range.
The first trip was with secondary students and we went to a university campus to participate in some workshops, attend a first year class, and hear a keynote address from a Harvard Professor.
The second trip was with elementary students to a provincial park and we had a chance to explore nature through physical activity, reflective practice, and with a hands-on workshop.
Very different days, but I still learned something interesting about students of any age. This made me very excited about education and of course love my job even more. (if possible)
There is a first time for everything. I was the Grinch feeling my heart swell three sizes both days. For some secondary students, it was their first time on a university campus, talking with freshmen students, sitting in on a class. I can’t really explain the faces of the students just letting it all sink in. “This is where I might be, this is what it’s like, I can achieve this.” Is wonderment a word? I don’t always get to see these “looks” on a stereotypical teen-angst student, but when it creeps in, you find yourself remembering why you entered education all those years ago.
For the elementary students, it was actually feeling their surroundings. Look. Listen. Absorb. This might have been the first time they weren’t just walking to get somewhere, but walking in the moment. For some students it was their first time with our enrichment group, others the first time in a park of this nature, others, the first time diving into our workshop. Have you ever really stopped and listened to the gasp a student makes when they discover something new?
I wish I could make everyday the “first time for everything” for my students. Maybe this is why we plan field trips, or co-op was created, or we start dabbling in tech. We all love those looks of wonder and those gasps of excitement. While I understand not every day will be sunshine and roses, it makes the ones that do end up that way all the more satisfying. If I had to explain my learning for these trips, I’d use these words: three sizes.