Summer. Whether you're a camp counselor, a summer school teacher or a parent, summer days are perfect for an adventure. You can bring a lunch and spend the day exploring somewhere you've never been before. In New York City almost any adventure can include a mix of indoor and outdoor activities so kids get a chance to learn more about their environment and study a specific topic as well. To make it easier to plan, we've found 4 great summer field trips, each complete with an easy outdoor lunch spot.
Grab a lunch and take the Staten Island ferry to Stan Snug Harbor. Its a gem of a park and cultural center located on Staten Island and offers great indoor and outdoor activities. There are number of fantastic institutions including The Staten Island Children's Museum, Nobel Maritime Museum and The Staten Island Museum to explore. If you're in the mood to spend time outside you can visit a number of different gardens, and even an urban farm! We recommend packing a lunch and visiting one of the museums in the morning, then spending the afternoon playing and exploring outside.
The Cloisters and Fort Tryon Park
Visiting the Cloisters in Fort Tryon Park makes you feel like you've been transported to another place and time. Children visiting there have the chance to learn about medieval life, myths and legends. You can even pretend to be kings and queens for the day. Once you've spent the morning in the museum, you can have lunch in the park overlooking the river and then spend time exploring the trails and gardens.
Socrates Sculpture Park and the Noguchi Museum
A day in Long Island City gives kids a chance to experience art and the outdoors all at once. Students can spend time exploring the installations at the Noguchi Museum which demonstrate the use of geometry and light. Then head over to the Socrates Sculpture Park and have lunch, while there students can play in the park or use Visual Thinking Strategies to discuss a sculpture they find interesting.
Who doesn't love a trip to the beach? Rockaway Beach is a wonderful place to take kids to explore the shore and the ocean. These beaches are often less crowded then places like Coney Island, and its easier to focus on the beach and the ecology surrounding it. There are bathrooms at Beach 116th and Beach 59th Street Playground. The Rockaway Waterfront Alliance also does wonderful beach workshops and cleanups for kids interested in ecology and habitats.