25 Jun 2018

DO STUDENTS REALLY LEARN ON FIELD TRIPS?

In the measurement of student academic performances in practical subjects various tasks are undertaken within the school and outside the school. Within the school, such exercises include assignments, farm practice and fieldwork supervised by the subject teacher, teacher-made tests, terminal examinations, continuous assessment etc. The results from the above exercises are graded and reported by the subject teacher as part of the progress report on the student. Furthermore, outside the school, external and independent examining bodies have emerged over the years to validate the assessment of student academic performance in agricultural science. These examination bodies include the West African Examination Council (WAEC) and National Examination Council (NECO).

This constitutes a strong basis to monitor and measure trends in performances over time and to equate test scores from one examination to the next as well as the disparities between and among schools, and states. It is sad that some students are lacking behind in these practical subjects because of their lack of exposure to the practical aspect of the subjects and this is why in a bid to improve student’s performance, a field trip was introduced.

The benefits of field trips in educational development among students in secondary schools cannot be over-emphasized. It has motivational effects on students towards accepting agriculture as a profession. It also has the potential to expose and educate students in secondary schools with a practical and real knowledge of what agriculture is. If well-designed results in higher student academic performance in all study areas. Above all, the collaboration and improvement in the school community relationship in the joint task for national development is another dimension to these benefits.

Enriching field trips contribute to the development of students into civilized young men and women who possess more knowledge about art, have stronger critical-thinking skills, exhibit increased historical empathy, display higher levels of tolerance, and have a greater taste for consuming art and culture. The large majority of students who had visited the museum were able to recall information about the paintings they had seen. Students who visited the museum were better able to think critically about pieces of art they had not seen before.

learning outside the classroom contributed significantly to raising standards and improving pupils personnel, social and emotional development. It is a journey into the land of knowledge for the purpose of acquiring practical knowledge and skill for a specified operation or occupation.

The best field trips can bring two seemingly unrelated worlds together. Children from large cities may not understand a math equation about livestock, crops, and the other staples of the rural experience because the students focus on the vocabulary, get confused, and skip the question.

Students in a rural community are often ignorant of urban and suburban terminology. Subway stops, fares, escalators these oft-used terms placed in a math test question can block the main idea and prevent a student from answering.

Sometimes state exams include questions that do not bridge the gap between rural and urban students.

A well-designed field trip can bring it all together: combine two or more subjects while offering a variety of learning styles and intelligence, integrate the arts, encourage low-income and English language learner students to make connections between community resources and opportunities and their family and culture.

These experiences allow all participating students to achieve a higher academic performance in all subject areas – not just the arts.

Kids need this vital component of school instruction, if not only to improve test scores, but to feel, see, touch, and even taste the real world around them. This is what they can get from a field trip.

 

Article by: Busayo Tomoh

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