How exciting to take the class outdoors and head to Soundview Camp with the first through third graders at my school! This was a special trip to me because it was the first time I've ever planned an overnight trip for three classes of lower elementary students and chaperones. It's hard to believe I'd been planning it since last year at this time.
I wanted the experience to bring together all my favorite parts of the Pacific Northwest. I spent the summer researching camps and communicating with camp directors to make sure we got the best arrangements for our school. I chose Soundview because it has a beautiful canopy of trees, farm animals, a beach, and comfortable cabins to sleep in. In addition, when I visited the camp in October, the director made a very positive impression. He truly cares about the land and has renovated it from the ground up to be an outdoor education program that teaches environmental awareness and social skills.
Coordinating a successful overnight trip requires a teacher to communicate in many different ways. Here are the top 3 ways Bloomz facilitated that communication for me and my school.
- Pre-Trip Reminders Leading up to the event I needed to ask families for both essential documents and other generally random items - like ukuleles! Because Bloomz allows teachers to post to the entire school community I was able to efficiently reach families of students in other classes.
- Live Documentation As the leader of the trip I had to manage multiple aspects of the day - at one point I worried I wasn't taking enough pictures. When I looked around, my assistant and three other teachers were snapping shots left and right! I checked Bloomz to find entire albums had already been uploaded. Bloomz allowed the trip to be easily documented by chaperones, teachers, and assistants. Parents could rest assure that their children were having a good time on the trip because we were posting pictures and videos on Bloomz throughout the process.
- Immediate Feedback for Administration While we were out gaining knowledge on tide pools and bird wingspans our principal was back at school receiving updates from Bloomz. She was able to see that we planned and executed a successful overnight trip. This is further validated by positive parent comments on Bloomz newsfeed posts. Because the administration received this feedback so quickly, we were greeted by smiling faces when we returned. Everyone was saying it looked like we had a fabulous trip and how wonderful the pictures were! It was nice to come back to a warm welcome from an informed administrative staff. Have you planned an overnight trip for your grade level before? If so how did Bloomz assist in the planning process? Please comment with your experiences in the section below.