Way back in January, we made it out to the Vancouver Zoo for a field trip. Sunshine had been studying animal habitats and types of animals in science, and the curriculum recommended a trip to the zoo. The only problem with doing that on the Island was that there is no Zoo there. So we put off our trip for a couple months, until we’d gotten settled from our Zoo.
Then I found a couple notebooks for the girls and we waited for a sunny day on which to head out to the Zoo to do our school. Mid-week and mid-winter, the Zoo was relatively quiet but many of the animals were out enjoying the sunshine just as we were. Like the lions…
The girls settled onto the nearby bleachers to record their notes on the lions. Sunshine was supposed to identify whether each animal was a mammal, reptile, fish or bird; what it was fed; whether it was a herbivor, carnivor, or omnivore; what shelter it had; and whether the shelter was for protection from the weather or from other animals. I taught her about point form for the sake of taking quicker notes and she also drew a picture of each animal in her notebook.
We continued wandering along the paths at the zoo. The stroller ended up carrying our coats while Jade ran ahead with Sunshine and Lily. We didn’t stop to take notes at every animal pen, but I tried to make sure that Sunshine got notes on at least one of each species of animal.
We also discovered that some of the signs had QR codes on them to videos for more information about the animals, so I quickly downloaded a QR code reader and the girls took turns watching the videos on my Smartphone. That was a great way for Sunshine to get more info for her notes on each animal.
Overall, it was a fun field trip. The girls worked on their writing and drawing skills, learned more about various animals from North America to Africa, got some exercise, practiced note-taking skills, and even did a bit of geography with the maps on each sign.
We also grabbed some snacks at the Zoo concession halfway through the afternoon and took a bit of time to play on the Zoo playground. Then we hit the highway back into the city to avoid traffic.