Field trips: positive motivation for students

Sammantha Lim, Opinion Editor

Do you remember when you used to beg to go to the store to pick out snacks or lunch the night before a big trip? Remember not being able to sleep the night before because you were too excited? Remember sitting and talking with friends on a bus transporting you to anywhere other than school? Remember the feeling of looking forward to something other than sitting in a classroom for seven hours?

Field trips are a staple memory of middle and elementary school years past. Field trips are not only for entertainment but also for educational purposes. “I do believe we should have field trips because they can be very beneficial to students as they allow students to get outside the classroom and learn more hands on,” junior Dani Sanchack said.

More field trips would help students who are more visual learners. “Most of our classes are currently verbal and do not include much of a visual aspect and leave students unable to understand what is happening,” junior Crystal Ndungu said.

Although students prefer field trips, they are particularly rare due to multiple factors. “Costs, food, student behavior on field trips need to be accounted for, and some students may use field trips as an excuse to get out of class,” Ndungu said.

Classes generally do not take field trips because the county requires working with materials in the classroom. “I think teachers underestimate how much we could learn in a new environment,” sophomore Beatrice Chung said.

Being in a different environment can allow students to feel as if they can behave differently than they usually do in a classroom setting. “Some students act out or are disruptive to the visual learners just because they are not in a sitting classroom environment, once again making it redundant to take the field trip,” Ndungu said.

While there are important details to take into consideration before any potential trip that requires leaving the classroom, “School field trips are great opportunities for education outside of the classroom and can actually allow students to look more forward to the class or learning about the material in a different format,” Chung said.

Field trips are a positive influence on students and more field trips should be implemented in different classes throughout the year to increase motivation. Although high school has removed most field trips, bringing them back would improve student learning. “I think if teachers reached a level of understanding with students about their behavior and contribution, then we would be able to have more field trips,” Ndungu said.