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Back-to-school season marks the start of field trip season in Arkansas. Whether you’re a teacher planning an unforgettable experience for your students, a parent looking to engage your child’s curiosity or just a curious local exploring the hidden gems of Arkansas, these field trip destinations are ideal for elementary-age children but will be exciting enough for the whole family.
Young kids significantly benefit from hands-on experiences, and there is no better way to make learning come alive than by taking a field trip. Field trips engage students through multiple learning styles and can solidify knowledge. But let’s face it, getting out of the classroom is just fun, exciting and memorable. This Arkansas Elementary Field Trip Guide will help you discover the best locations for kids in preschool through sixth grade.
Mid-America Science Museum – Hot Springs
The Mid-America Science Museum in Hot Springs is home to over 100 hands-on exhibits that explore various scientific topics, including dinosaurs, space, the human body and energy. The museum also has a digital dome planetarium and a butterfly house. Students can experience a variety of hands-on workshops or shows geared toward education.
Museum of Discovery – Little Rock
The Museum of Discovery is great for learning about science and technology. It’s been around since 1927, and it’s one of the oldest museums in Arkansas. All exhibits are interactive so that you can touch, feel and explore. There’s something for everyone, from physics to biology to engineering. The museum also offers a variety of educational programs and events.
Scott Family Amazeum – Bentonville
The Amazeum offers customized hands-on experiences for school children focusing on science and technology. Museum educators will create an experience based on your classroom needs on topics from dinosaurs to engineering and everything in between.
Arkansas State University Museum – Jonesboro
The Arkansas State University Museum in Jonesboro is a museum that focuses on the natural history and cultural heritage of Northeast Arkansas and the Mississippi River Delta. See a giant mastodon replica, various historical displays and play in the Tinker Studio.
Historic Washington State Park – Washington
Historic Washington State Park preserves the town of Washington, Arkansas, a former pioneer settlement along the Southwest Trail. The park contains nearly 50 historic structures, live demonstrations, and programs celebrating Arkansas’s heritage and culture.
Ozark Folk Center State Park – Mountain View
The Ozark Folk Center, located in the foothills of the Ozark Mountains, is a living history museum that preserves and presents Ozark cultural heritage and tradition including arts, crafts and music.
Museum of the Arkansas Grand Prairie – Stuttgart
The Museum of the Arkansas Grand Prairie is a local history museum located in Stuttgart, Arkansas. It was founded in 1974 to preserve the history of the Grand Prairie region, which is known for its rice production and duck hunting. The museum has over 10,000 artifacts, including exhibits on the history of agriculture, the pioneers who farmed the Grand Prairie, and the region’s rich duck hunting culture. The museum also has a variety of educational programs and events for all ages.
Walton Arts Center – Fayetteville
The Walton Arts Center in Fayetteville is a gallery and performing arts center that hosts a variety of Broadway shows, concerts, dance performances and other events, making it an ideal field trip destination for students to experience the arts.
Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts – Little Rock
The Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts (AMFA) offers a variety of field trip programs for kids of all ages. These programs are designed to help students learn about art in a fun and interactive way. Enjoy a museum tour led by a museum educator who helps students learn about the different types of art and how to look at art. Students can also attend one of the children’s theater programs geared toward kids.
Learn more about how to make fine art accessible to kids.
Forrest L. Wood Crowley’s Ridge Nature Center – Jonesboro
The nature center offers programs and exhibits on the wildlife, natural history and topography of the Crowley’s Ridge area. There is an observation deck in the education complex and a series of trails for nature walks.
Students may also enjoy visiting one of these nature centers:
Blanchard Springs Caverns – Fifty-Six
Blanchard Springs Caverns is a popular field trip destination for schools and other groups. The caverns offer a variety of tours, including a Dripstone Tour, a Wild Cave Tour, and a Discovery Tour. The Dripstone Tour is the most popular tour and takes visitors through the most spectacular formations in the caverns. The Wild Cave Tour is for more adventurous groups and takes visitors through unlit areas of the caverns. The Discovery Tour is a shorter tour that is geared towards younger children.
Learn more about caves across Arkansas.
Arkansas Alligator Farm & Petting Zoo – Hot Springs
The Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo is a privately owned zoo in Hot Springs, Arkansas, that houses over 200 alligators, as well as other animals such as cougars, turkeys, chickens, wild boars, turtles, bobcats and ring-tailed lemurs. Visitors can feed the alligators, hold baby alligators, and pet other animals in the petting zoo.
Little Rock Zoo – Little Rock
Children will view more than 500 species of animals at the Little Rock Zoo while learning about conservation efforts for various species. Special educational programs are available for larger groups. Call in advance for group reservations.
Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge – Eureka Springs
Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge is a nearly 500-acre nonprofit wildlife sanctuary in Eureka Springs that provides lifelong care for abused, abandoned and neglected big cats. Visitors can learn about these amazing animals through guided tram tours and self-guided educational exhibits.
Arkansas Skatium – Little Rock
The Arkansas Skatium in Little Rock, Arkansas, is a dual ice and roller skating facility that offers public skating sessions, lessons and parties. It’s perfect for a laid-back, fun outing for kids.
Parker Pioneer Homestead – Harrisburg
The Parker Homestead offers one of the most expansive private collections of pioneer-era buildings and artifacts in Arkansas. The collection includes a church, school, barn, blacksmith shop, four houses, a grist mill, a post office and thousands of artifacts foraged from across Arkansas. The homestead opens for a festival each fall, but limited field trips are available by appointment.
Arkansas Frontier – Quitman
This living history farm was started by teachers and is open each October. Field trips include a pumpkin patch, farm tour and hayride. Students can tour a pioneer homestead, a Native American village and a one-room schoolhouse. There are plenty of other activities for a full day of hands-on fun.
Peebles Farm and Corn Maze – Augusta
Peebles Farm is a family-owned and operated farm located in Augusta. The farm offers a variety of activities and programs for school groups, such as a self-guided tour of the corn maze, a hayride, a visit to the petting zoo, and a variety of hands-on activities, such as pumpkin picking, cotton picking and duck races. School groups are welcome Wednesday through Friday with advanced reservations.
Did we miss one of your favorite Arkansas field trip locations? Tell us in the comments so we can add it to a future list.
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