Field trips used to be a regular part of a well rounded secular education They provided opportunities for learning that weren’t always available in a classroom setting – at least not in the same way. With budget cuts and a focus on memorizing for a bevy of standardized tests, your Bible students may not have had a field trip in school. Regardless of their previous experience with field trips, your Bible students could benefit from a field trip organized by you or your ministry.
Learning excursions can provide various important spiritual benefits to the children participating. One learning excursion will not give them all of these benefits. With careful planning, however, each experience can provide one or more benefits. If learning excursions are provided regularly over a period of time, the children to whom you minister can grow spiritually in multiple ways.
- Understanding the cultures in the Bible. Many museums contain artifacts from the cultures in the Bible. A learning excursion to specific exhibits will give children an opportunity to see an actual idol of Baal or a clay oil lamp and other items they have read about in the Bible.
- Comprehending the historicity of the Bible. Much of the Bible is a book of history, although children may be taught otherwise in school or at home. Visiting museums that contain the objects and cultures in the Bible helps underscore the historical nature of the Bible.
- Learning to see God. Learning excursions to natural areas are a great way to connect students to God through His creation.
- Discovering and developing their gifts from God. Learning excursions can provide children with an opportunity to experiment with various gifts and find the ones God may have given them. They can also be used to give students with particular gifts opportunities to develop them more fully.
- Building empathy. Learning excursions can be designed so children develop empathy for others. These experiences must be carefully planned to avoid unintentional negative consequences, but when executed well, children can find them life changing.
- Building relationships and community. Children need a strong emotional connection to the people in their church family. These relationships and connections can help young people through their more turbulent teen and young adult years. Learning excursions can give children more opportunities to bond with peers and adult members of their church family.
Planning periodic field trips with your Bible class students can provide extra learning and mentoring time for them. It really is worth taking the time and effort to host them.