We're Going on a Field Trip... Ideas to help you plan, organize, and survive field trips!



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So, you're planning a field trip...

Field trip days are both the best and most exhausting days of the year, amIright?

They take an incredible amount of planning, organization, and energy to successfully pull off,  but the excitement is unparalleled! After a few years of just kind of throwing permission forms, money, chaperone lists, whatever other paper work I get into a manila file folder, I decided that I wanted to be more organized. So...I started working on a Field Trip Binder to help me keep all the things together, and save me time and energy! It's one of those things that I've had sitting on my computer, done enough for me to use, but not quite done enough to share with others, until recently, and I'm SO EXCITED to share it with you now! I genuinely hope that it helps make planning, organizing, and actually going on field trips easier for you! Of course, all of these ideas can be utilized without purchasing my binder, but if you want to save yourself some time and energy, you can find my binder by clicking HERE or the photo below (just click somewhere besides the "pin it" button).

THE FOLLOWING INCLUDES IDEAS OF THINGS TO THINK ABOUT WHILE GETTING READY FOR YOUR TRIP 
(Don't want to reinvent the wheel? My Field Trip Binder on TpT (found HERE or by clicking outside the "pin it" button on any of the photos) includes forms for all of these and will save you TIME! I've included sample pictures of them throughout this blog post as ideas, but you could obviously make your own versions (For personal use. Don't copy mine and try to sell them. That is a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, my intellectual property, plus it's just mean!) 
Looking for a way to save your sanity on field trips? Check out this blog post! Filled with ideas to plan, organize, and stay sane on field trips with elementary students. Includes a list of field trip ideas, organizational tips, and more! #FieldTrip #TeachersPayTeachers #ClassroomOrganization

1. PERMISSION FORMS
Save yourself time and energy by creating a template. Just change the specific details for your trip, but leave the majority of it as a standard form.
I organize mine with details including:
   -Date of trip and due date for forms/money to be returned
   -Departure and return times
   -Location and address
   -Lunch options and info
   -Special accommodations (such as clothing, shoes, meals, etc)
   -Cost
   -Chaperone info
   -Permission form for parents to sign

I keep a template that I make minor tweaks to information to, but keep the majority of the info for parents the same.

Honestly, I'm a sucker for cute. I want everything that I send home to be adorable, and I cringe when I see generic forms in Times New Romans. I get it, not everyone is like me, but I'm hoping that these little cuties make it easier for you to add a little cuteness to your forms. In my binder, I included (editable) forms to send home. There are over 30 permission forms with related graphics, and several options for generic forms as well. They all follow the pattern shown in the picture below. These are an editable PDF, so you can literally edit any of the text on these forms (but not the graphics) without having to resize, insert fonts, or change colors, etc. Super easy peasy, lemon squeezy!

Looking for a way to save your sanity on field trips? Check out this blog post! Filled with ideas to plan, organize, and stay sane on field trips with elementary students. Includes a list of field trip ideas, organizational tips, and more! #FieldTrip #TeachersPayTeachers #ClassroomOrganization

2. ORGANIZATION FORMS AND CHECKLISTS
Checklists are beautiful things and they make it easy to quickly see what has been done, and what still needs to be done. A few things that you may need to do to prepare for a trip
-Contact the location and set a date
-Contact your busing department and confirm a bus
-Create a schedule for the field trip day
-Create a checklist to mark off which student has returned paperwork
-Note any IEP's or accomodations that will be relevant for the trip to easily inform your field trip location and chaperones
Looking for a way to save your sanity on field trips? Check out this blog post! Filled with ideas to plan, organize, and stay sane on field trips with elementary students. Includes a list of field trip ideas, organizational tips, and more! #FieldTrip #TeachersPayTeachers #ClassroomOrganization

3. CHAPERONE TOOLS
Often tools for chaperones need to be made on a trip by trip basis, because your chaperones will change, but there are a few things you can do at the beginning of the year to help you be prepared all year.
-Keep a running list of parents who have background checks completed
-Keep contact info handy for parents who regularly volunteer
-Print name tags for students and have them ready
I also keep a spreadsheet of students who may require extra assistance (allergies, inhalers, etc) ready so that I don't forget to tell the parent in charge of the group the day of the field trip.

Looking for a way to save your sanity on field trips? Check out this blog post! Filled with ideas to plan, organize, and stay sane on field trips with elementary students. Includes a list of field trip ideas, organizational tips, and more! #FieldTrip #TeachersPayTeachers #ClassroomOrganization

For name tags, use string, gimp, or grab something a little more durable like these:
 

4. REFLECTION FORMS
I love having my kids sit and write a quick reflection of their field trip when we returned. I even had my kinder babies write about their day! It was simply an easy, but meaningful, way for us to reflect on our trip and for me to see kid true feelings about it. If they hated it, let's try to find a new one for next year. If they loved it, let's make it an annual trip! Who cares if I go on the trip 30 times, it's their first time. Plus, reading their highlights usually made my heart burst and made all the time and effort feel worth it! I added in a bunch of quick and easy reflection sheets.

Looking for a way to save your sanity on field trips? Check out this blog post! Filled with ideas to plan, organize, and stay sane on field trips with elementary students. Includes a list of field trip ideas, organizational tips, and more! #FieldTrip #TeachersPayTeachers #ClassroomOrganization

Grab some Astrobrights paper, print your reflection forms in September, and be ready for all the field trips for the year! Amazon always has the best deals! You can grab some here:

   or these 

IDEAS OF WHERE TO GO ON FIELD TRIPS:

Looking for a way to save your sanity on field trips? Check out this blog post! Filled with ideas to plan, organize, and stay sane on field trips with elementary students. Includes a list of field trip ideas, organizational tips, and more! #FieldTrip #TeachersPayTeachers #ClassroomOrganization

Good luck on your next field trip!  











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