The concepts of health and sustainability are highly important in today’s society. To be sure, various organizations and individuals are taking action to help spread awareness of the interconnected nature of health and sustainability; as a result, information on the matter appears in numerous places, from newspapers to television ads, and even to advertisements in grocery stores.
Of course, as adults, we have the ability to learn about health and sustainability through various sources of media. But how can we teach our children about these important concepts?
Ultimately, one of the best ways to teach kids about any topic is by taking them on a field trip. So in recognition of October as National Field Trip Month, we have provided a list of four fun field trip ideas to teach your little ones about health and sustainability. Make sure your kids have access to one or more of these trips this year for an exciting way to learn about their health and the future.
1. Head to the Grocery Store
While traveling to the grocery store may seem more like an errand than an elementary field trip idea, in reality it can be highly informative for your children. To be sure, when traveling with parents, kids may not be aware of what’s in the aisles; but when going as a school group, they may be more likely to remain attentive.
When you’re in the store, ask questions about the source of the food, the ingredients used to make it, and the nutritional value. This is a great opportunity to teach the children about the importance of food produced locally, unprocessed food, and food free of any hormones or antibiotics.
2. Visit a Local Garden
Do your children understand the hard work and persistence that goes into growing even a minute amount of food? While food may appear on the kitchen table three times a day, children may not have an appreciation for the dedication that goes into growing it from the ground.
So before the last harvest ends, for a great middle school field trip idea, visit a local garden to view the food in its natural environment. Here, your children may be able to ask questions of local gardeners, witness the harvest in action, and even get a chance to pull a few vegetables or tubers from the ground. Doing so will help children obtain a better understanding of the process behind putting food on the table in front of them each day.
3. Schedule a Visit with a Beekeeper
This elementary field trip idea may only be available to children and families in certain areas. However, if you have a local beekeeper in your area who is open to visits, you should consider taking advantage of this opportunity to provide your children with a fun and educational experience.
What can your children learn when you take them to visit a local beekeeper? To begin, during this field trip your children will learn about the process that goes into making honey, a natural sweetener and undoubtedly a healthier alternative to bleached sugar or corn syrup. Furthermore, your children can learn about the symbiotic relationship between bees and flora, and how any damage to that relationship can have devastating effects on the ecosystem as a whole. This is an integral concept that ultimately relates to the entire idea of natural sustainability.
4. Plan Your Garden for Next Year
This activity is slightly different from the rest; for this field trip idea, you will need to spend most of the year planning and preparing to plant a garden in the spring, and then taking action towards the middle of next year. You can spend the rest of this season discussing what you will need to start your garden, such as hours spent planting, watering, and weeding, as well as the types of plants you wish to grow together in your garden.
What will this teach your children about health and sustainability? Most importantly, by planning and taking action later on, this field trip idea will help the kids learn how much work goes into growing even a small garden, including the physical actions of planting in the beginning and harvesting at the end. In addition to this, when planning on what to plant in the ground, the kids will learn about various types of vegetables and their health benefits in a balanced diet.
Learn About Health and Sustainability with Your Children This Year
It is entirely undeniable: the connected topics of health and sustainability are extremely relevant in today’s society. And while we, as adults, may be bombarded with information about these topics on a routine basis, children may not be entirely aware. As such, if you want your kids to learn about sustainability and health in the present day, consider these great field trip ideas for the upcoming year for a fun way to learn together.