Almost all teachers now a days realise the value of learning outside of the classroom. The experience students gather on education tours can help to raise their level of motivation and self-esteem and, of course, will increase their knowledge.
The Value of Learning Outside of the Classroom
While the classroom is the perfect place to learn the fundamental concepts of each school subject, this is simply not enough on its own. Educational trips show students how their subjects apply to the real world. There’s no doubt that these kinds of school tours contribute to the development of skills and the acquisition of knowledge. Studies of languages, science, the arts, geography and history can all be greatly enhanced outside of the classroom.
Many students lose interest in subjects in the classroom as they are unable to see how they apply, from a practical perspective, to the real world. An educational tour to, for instance, a science museum can help these students to see how their education in biology, chemistry and physics is put to use. This can help to re-ignite their interest in the subject. It has also been shown that children tend to retain what they learn more easily if relevant tours are made in conjunction with a topic they are currently discussing in the classroom.
Yet another benefit of this type of school trip is that students can see first hand the way in which various school subjects are related to one another. For example, a trip to a museum will teach students not just about history, but also geography and science.
Where to Go on an Educational Tour
Many teachers in the US choose to take their students on high school trips to Washington DC, as this provides them with a vivid learning experience about the US government, its three branches and the way in which a Bill can be passed or defeated. They also have the opportunity to learn about natural history, military history and American history at the Smithsonian museums and other monuments, memorials and various historical sites. In addition, many of the architectural landmarks around this city serve as commemorations of significant chapters in the history of the US and as such would be perfect for those on school tours to visit. Not only are the museums in Washington DC ideal for educational purposes, the vast majority of them are also free to enter.
For those who wish to extend their school tours, it may also be a good idea to include some of the areas surrounding Washington DC. You will find that places such as Maryland, Virginia and Greenbelt, as well as Fairfax County, are all excellent choices. The home of Martha and George Washington — Mount Vernon — is located close to the River Potomac in Fairfax County, just 15 miles outside of Washington. For close to four decades, the Commander-in-Chief of the US revolutionary forces and the First President of the United States called this place home. Today, visiting students can see the pioneer farm site, a working blacksmith shop, a plantation, a mansion and George Washington’s tomb, providing them with more insight into the 1700s than any history book possibly could.
If you are in a different country, pick on your country capital, museums, nearby historical places et al.