Class Trips and Outdoor Learning Experiences
Learning at St. Francis may start in the classroom, but it certainly doesn’t end there! Our Primary II through eighth-grade students gain a deeper understanding of a variety of subjects—from U.S. and Texas history to earth science and gardening—through class trips, cultural enrichment and participation in the school’s Outdoor Learning Experiences program. This extraordinary program combines curriculum study with extensive opportunities for critical thinking, the application of problem-solving strategies, captivating primary-source learning and the creation of unforgettable lifetime memories. Although OLE began as a way to help our students connect with and gain a deeper understanding of nature, the program has expanded to include other off-campus experiences that incorporate indoor as well as outdoor learning, such as trips to explore United States history.
In Primary II through third grade, students learn more about the world around them through daylong field trips to exciting and informative
locations within the Houston area, as well through frequent visits to the
school’s vegetable gardens and certified Nature Explore Outdoor Classroom. Based on field-tested, research-based principles for creating effective spaces that support children’s interactions with the natural world, this 12,240-square-foot outdoor space allows students from every grade level to collaborate as they learn about the earth’s natural energy resources.
Our fourth-through-eighth graders also benefit from the Nature Explore Outdoor Classroom, and participate in OLE through overnight trips to locations throughout the state and nation. These trips allow our older students to experience independence and hands-on learning, to bond with their fellow classmates, and to apply their classroom learning in locations across America.