Using Graphic Organizers to Integrate Field Trips into the Curriculum


Graphic Organizers work to integrate field trips into the curriculum.

By field trips, we don't mean only the cross-county bus trips to the zoo, amusement park, or to a concert or play. Field trips are important, even if the students just go to, well, a field.

The power of discovery is motivating and self-rewarding. It is far easier to discover something in a vacant field than in the "space-for-rent" mind of a seat-bound student. The reason that the "space is for rent" is that bored students sit at the desk, but mentally and emotionally, they are visiting more exciting places.

Field trips present an opportunity for students to talk about the curriculum. Talking about the curriculum is a crucial activity that is absent in most text-book-driven-high-stakes-test environments.

Why use a Graphic Organizer instead of a worksheet for the field trip?

The Graphic Organizer structures thought by opening connections, associations and implications. The worksheet narrows thought to "right answers" thinking, instead of "new answers" thinking.

Use the power of Graphic Organizers and Multiple Intelligences to structure creativity, problem-solving, decision-making, data collecting and communication into field trip experiences.

This is the way to integrate field trips into the curriculum...by expanding the meaning of the field trip with Graphic Organizers.