Celebration time is just around the corner. It’s moving in quickly with the cold front. My dining table is full of gifts and wrapping paper. Soon the gifts will be under the tree and my dining table will be clean and ready for family to gather. How will I ever get it all done? I ask myself this question every year, and every year, I manage to be ready for the celebration.
In our classrooms, the students are anxious and antsy. They have more difficultly focusing. When my colleagues and I began planning a field trip for December 16th, I thought we were nuts to do it so close to Christmas break when the weather (literally and figuratively) changes daily. It turned out to be the perfect time.
On Friday, the weather was cool but not cold, cloudy but not raining as we set out at 6:30 AM on a charter bus heading to St. Francisville, Louisiana to the Myrtles Plantation, one of the top haunted mansions in the US. The stories of the “little spirits” both intrigued and frightened my students. I have to admit I was a little unsettled when I heard ticking coming from the old desk I was standing next to.
Our next stop was the cemetery of Grace Episcopal Church. This cemetery is a beautiful place with draping oaks and old graves. Our students made gravestone rubbings that we will later use for a research/writing project.
Taking students outside the classroom is an effort in planning, making reservations, arranging payment, yet every time we do it, I realize how important it is to get us outside and into the world. We traveled northeast to Natchez, MS. to visit the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians, run the mounds, and learn about the ways of the original Americans. We walked the old Natchez Trace and visited an old inn.
When we return from our winter break, we will revisit this field trip and turn our learning experience into digital posts and presentations. But, for now, I celebrate the opportunity to take students out of the classroom and into an earlier time and place to learn and play together.
I will be taking a holiday break from DigiLitSunday. Come back on January 8th.
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