This week we joined in on a fabulous field trip. The location? Not a museum or popular attraction. No, for this trip we were traveling county roads. A few of my children thought we might have been lost. No, no worries – I printed out the map and directions from Google Maps. It was so much fun, such a neat place, I’ll be looking for more. We’ll be making time to find hidden gems with local field trips.
On this particular day, we visited Sculpture Trails. It is exactly what the name implies, beautiful sculptures scattered along trails. Located near Solsberry, Indiana, this outdoor museum is equal parts art appreciation and nature hike. We’d love to go back and actually get our hands dirty and make some art ourselves. We visited a month after their really big event, an annual iron pour. We definitely want to attend that next year.
So, how do you go about finding these hidden gems? A friend organized this trip for our casual homeschool group. I have also found a few other possibilities by looking at the websites for nearby counties. We have some tourist areas in our region. Those are nice and expected for school field trips. But, we like to visit places off the beaten path.
- Local festivals
- State-run historical sites
- Artists’ guilds – even better results when you search your state + the type of artist/craftsman, such as glass blowing
- Industry your region or state are known for
- College or university museums, libraries or other sites These might be more known, but are often less busy and can be an intimate experience
We have such a wealth of history and beauty all around us, in our communities. Take full advantage of it. If there are not obvious field trip options with a place or group you are interested in, simply contact them and ask. When it is possible (safety concerns sometimes prohibit it), most are willing to accommodate a group of interested and appreciative children. I love the opportunity to show our children how others are pursuing their passions. There is a world of possibilities out there — and that is part of why we homeschool.