Quick Field Trips To The Park

One of the easiest ways to use the community as your classroom is to go to the park. Regardless of where your school is, there is probably a patch of grass within ten blocks. Why not take a mini field trip? Parks provide countless opportunities for students to learn or reinforce math, science and writing skills. Read on for a few ways you can use the park in your lessons.


In early elementary school, the park provides the perfect place to practice counting. Have students see how many of a given object they can find. Play eye-spy with shapes. See if students can find a shape in nature.

For upper elementary school, the park is a perfect place to practice measurement. Ask students to collect a group of sticks then measure each one to figure out which one is longest. If you are studying perimeter or area ask students to work together to find the perimeter and area of a section of the park.


A field trip to the park gives students the perfect opportunity to practice what they've been learning in science. If you are learning about the food chain, have students see if they can find and diagram or write about an example they found in nature. It can also provide a great opportunity to discuss the life cycle of a plant. Can students find a seed, a seedling and a full grown tree?


In the park, students can hone their observation skills. Give students five minutes to pick an object they find super interesting. Once they've identified what they'd like to study have them spend 15 minutes writing down every detail that they can observe. Back in the classroom, students can turn their list into a descriptive paragraph.


Depending on where your local park is located, you may need to get a permission slip. Many schools have families sign a year long 'walking permission slip' that lets teachers take students off campus and to places like the park when needed. Make sure you check with your school about the policies before you head out.

Additionally, make sure students bring all the supplies they need for your mini field trip. If they are going to write or draw, make sure they bring the supplies they will need including something to lean on.

Can you think of other ways to use the park as your classroom? What are they?