Field Trips Adapt to Fit New Protocols

Cate Williams, Staff Writer

This year, standard field trips that took place during passed years underwent massive change to insure the health of each student. Although different from tradition, each grade was still able to have a unique and memorable experience due the alterations of each event.

7th grade: Last March, the 7th grade took a field trip to Circle F Dude Ranch, where students participated in various team building activities. Opposed to the traditional field trip to Pathfinder during the first semester, the trip was rescheduled and relocated. Adjustments were made such as dividing the grade into smaller activity groups and bus groups. The delay of events allowed extra time for planning a safer, healthier way for students to still enjoy their expected field trip. With a smaller class size, 7th grade was able to partake in horseback riding and several other outdoor activities that other larger grades could not. On the other hand, with cooler weather nearing the end of March, the 7th grade students missed out on participating in water-based activities such as canoeing and swimming. In addition to their trip to Circle F Dude Ranch, 7th graders are continuing the tradition of visiting Sea World on April 30th. There, the students will enjoy a day of rollercoaster rides, observing aquatic animals and making memories with their fellow classmates. 

6th Grade: 6th grade students enjoyed a trip to the Circle F Dude Ranch on April 30th where they participated in similar team bonding and outdoor activities. With warmer weather, the students had the option to participate in water-based activities in addition to horseback riding and team building. The usual field trip to Ebenezer could not  take place while following COVID-19 guidelines. 

   “Going all the way to Georgia on a bus just didn’t seem feasible, especially for a day long trip,” Guidance Counselor and Varsity Cheer Head Coach Rylan Smith said. 

   Although the students won’t be a part of the traditional Ebenezer experience, 6th grade will also visit the New Smyrna Discover Center on May 14th. This newly added trip will encompass an educational, yet fun-filled day of learning about the wildlife of the Indian Lagoon River. 

8th Grade: 8th grade students had the opportunity to partake in the annual trip to Camp Kulaqua on April 8th. Although the trip took place later in the year than usual, the students were still able to have their traditional field trip, unlike other grades. There, students enjoyed a natural on-site spring, water park and exotic zoo. With the option to participate in a variety of outdoor activities, 8th grade was able to follow COVID-19 guidelines while staying safe and building relationships. Along with Camp Kulaqua, the students also Busch Gardens on May 7th. With the proper adjustments in group size, 8th grade was able to have a traditional experience, despite COVID-19.

9th Grade: May 7th held an exciting day for the freshman class. Their field trip to Circle F Dude Ranch took place on this date with a wide variety of activities available. As the school year is coming to an end, this field trip was less focussed on team building and more about having fun. The following activities were planned: Horseback riding, rock climbing, and various group activities.

“I was super excited to have the opportunity to make some final memories during my first year of highschool,” Freshman Addie Field said. 

12th grade: On April 9th, 12th grade took their senior retreat to Camp Kulaqua. The seniors signed up for activities that could range anywhere from horseback riding and high ropes, to canoeing, dodgeball or even beach volleyball. Each assigned group went through a few sessions of each activity and attended two workshops. During the first workshop, each individual received their 9th grade letter back and reflect on everything that has happened since.

   “It was really cool to see how much I’ve grown as a person since my freshman year,” Senior Gabriel Steinberg said. 

The second workshop discussed the future of each student in their upcoming years at college and stressed the importance of keeping strong relationships with their parents. Ken Miller, a featured speaker, also participated in each workshop where he talked about campus safety and how to make smart choices at college. Miller also discussed on-campus resources that are available for mental health and academic support for each student. Lastly, there was a session about how to choose the right roommate for college and what behaviors you should consider to have a successful living situation.  

  “I think having a realistic conversation about public safety and what to expect in college really helped me prepare for the future,” Steinberg said.