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Field Trip Checklist

Congratulations! You have been chosen to plan a field trip. While taking your students on
an educational adventure can be exciting, it can also be daunting. Where do you start and how long do you need to plan? Here is a step-by-step guide to help you plan your trip from start to finish. 

Six Months Before

  • Talk to principal or other administrators to ensure there is room in the budget for
    a field trip.
  • Research possible field trip sites.
  • Talk with other teachers to ensure their participation.
  • Think about how the field trip will tie in with curriculum and key learning principles.
  • Meet with principal and/or administrators to discuss field trip locations and the trip’s
    educational value.
  • Choose a date for your field trip that doesn’t interfere with other school events.
  • Contact chosen field trip location to confirm availability.

Three Months Before

  • Confirm date, time and location with other teachers. 
  • Reserve school buses or other transportation for the trip. 
  • Confirm date, time, and projected number of students with field trip location. 
  • Arrange for payment to be sent to field trip location.
  • Choose several point people who will help you execute the field trip.
  • Determine educational goals for the trip and vocabulary you want to emphasize.
  • Conduct a pre-trip visit to the site. This will help you plan pre-trip activities
    and lessons.

One Month Before

  • Explain the trip to students and what they will learn and experience. 
  • Send a note home with students detailing the trip and asking for a parent’s signature and money to attend if necessary. 
  • Finalize your group’s plans with administration and field trip location.
  • Recruit parent chaperones and explain what is expected of them. 
  • Review field trip safety protocol with teachers and chaperones.
  • Gather student permission slips and other field trip materials into one binder. 

One Week Before

  • Arrange for subs and create lesson plans for students who cannot attend the field trip. 
  • Make a list of all teachers and chaperones attending the field trip and their contact information. Submit a copy of the list to administrators.
  • Gather health information and medication list for students monitored by school nurse.
  • Notify the cafeteria of students who will need a lunch. 

The Day Before

  • Send out reminder (through text or email) about field trip.
  • Remind students of field trip events and what they will experience. 
  • Remind students what they need to bring or wear (school shirt, a hat, sunscreen, etc.).
  • Communicate the day’s plan with other teachers and chaperones.
  • Check the weather forecast and plan accordingly. 
  • Make sure you have student medications, field trip binder, and any other supplies ready to go.
  • Print off several copies of the trip itinerary.
  • Make sure to pack a first aid kit or confirm that one will be available to you. 

The Day of the Field Trip

  • Briefly meet with assigned chaperones and introduce them to their groups.
  • Remind students of the day’s activities and how they are expected to behave.
  • Confirm number of students attending. Communicate this number to administration, teachers, chaperones and bus drivers. 
  • Make sure lunches have been loaded onto the bus.
  • Take attendance when everyone is seated on the bus.
  • Tell students what to look for while on the field trip and what they will learn about.
  • Ask students to relay information they learn during the trip. 
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Categories:  Field Trips
Keywords:  Field Trip Guide

About the Author

Jessa McClure

Jessa McClure

Jessa is the Editor-in-Chief of Hooray for Family and the mom of three energetic children. She has a BA in Mass Communication/Journalism from the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, and is a long-time resident of Central Texas. When she isn't writing and editing, she enjoys playing board games with her kids, teaching Sunday school and channeling her creativity into craft projects. 

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