Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Field trips provide invaluable experiences

Hannah Mui
Staff Writer


In the middle school, each grade goes on field trips to help students understand topics they are learning  but in a different way. When entering the high school last year I expected my classes to go on field trips to museums, historical sites, and theaters. In school many of the courses offered do not go on field trips. Most of the field trips students attend at New Hope-Solebury are through optional school club events.
 If students had the opportunity to visit museums with their fellow classmates and engage in a different way of  learning the same types of topics it could help improve grades. Field trips are fun for students and help them learn new things. By going on field trips, students can retain the information learned in a more engaging way. It’s good for students to get out of the classroom to give the brain a rest.
      Field trips contribute to the development of students into civilized people by placing them in public spaces such as museums, parks, and theaters. Field trips not only contributes to our overall knowledge but also helps shape how we act in public. An experiment was done at the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Arkansas to test how much students can retain and learn in one day at the art museum. Students were randomly selected from 123 different schools to participate in the study. Half of the students selected received a tour of the art museum and the other half did not.Students that received the museum tour had higher critical thinking about art as opposed to the control group. By visiting an art museum, students can increase their appreciation and understanding of life during certain time periods. 88% of the students who received the tour was able to remember what paintings depicted when asked several weeks later. This shows that things learned outside the classroom can be retained by students.The results of the experiment also showed that student interest in visiting art museums increased.
    Recently, I attended the S.Y.S.T.E.M.S. field trip to a chemistry laboratory in East Hanover, New Jersey. My classmates and I were able to work in a modern laboratory and perform experiments related to pharmaceutical chemistry. I was able to learn about the type of tests the FDA would use to make sure a drug is safe for the public to use before being put on the market. Through performing these tests on the practice drugs I was able to experience working in a real laboratory as a job. I was also able to determine whether I wanted to pursue chemistry as a major in college.
    The New Hope-Solebury High school should offer more field trips for certain courses to improve students grades. By the school offering more field trips students are able to meet others and create new relationships while at the same time learning in a fun way that will be retained for a long time.

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