8 Educational Field Trips that Teach Kids Culture and History

road schooling part 1 2144

Ready to take your child’s education beyond the classroom? There’s no rule that says you have to wait for a class field trip to expose kids to hands-on learning. Take the whole family on fun educational outings (local walking tours, cooking classes, museums, events) so everyone benefits. Here are a few of southern California’s best spots for experiential learning - call them micro-adventures, if you wish! These culture and history field trips can be done in a day or over a weekend.

Riley’s Farm
Oak Glen, CA
About two hour northeast of San Diego is Riley’s Farm, a working apple orchard that offers Adventures in The Old World every Saturday. Step back in time to a colonial farm. Interact with costumed living history professionals as they offer guided demonstrations. Hands-on activities rotate and might include archery, candle dipping or blacksmithing.

The farm also offers “Glam Camping,” a fascinating and immersive historical experience. Guests stay in a colonial marquee tent furnished with a four-poster bed, plus cots for children. Deluxe packages include meals and period clothing to wear during your stay.

Don’t miss the annual Colonial Faire, held Saturdays in July. The farm transforms into an 18th century New England village. Enjoy music and theatrical performances, sword duels, classic sports and more. Hawk’s Head Publick House offers authentic fare year-round. Tea time and living history dinner shows are available.

Fort Cross Old Timey Adventures
Julian, CA
Visit Fort Cross to learn about homesteading in the Old West. From hayrides to hoedowns, this spot has it all. Events are held seasonally and offer fun activities like rope making, candle dipping, petting zoo and more. Fort Cross is also a great choice for family tent camping. Enjoy nightly campfire sing-alongs, morning coffee, and even a community barbecue for that extra touch of country comfort.

Japanese American National Museum
Los Angeles, CA
Explore Japanese American culture at this engaging museum. Book a group tour to learn the art of origami and enjoy a Taiko drumming presentation. Or visit Chado Tea Room on site for tastings and educational demonstrations. Exhibits give special attention to the immigration experience and forced incarceration during WWII. A reassembled internment barrack provides an important discussion opportunity for young visitors. Closed Mondays. The museum is located in LA’s Little Tokyo; the perfect setting to immerse your family in the sights, sounds and tastes of Japanese culture.

GRAMMY Museum
Los Angeles, CA
Explore the cultural and historical significance of American music at this immersive and interactive museum. Rotating exhibits showcase music artists of all eras and genres. See artifacts like Michael Jackson’s red “Thriller” jacket and watch film reels of memorable Grammy performances. Music production buffs won’t want to miss the museum’s studio experience, where guests learn firsthand the joys and challenges of creating recorded music.

IN SAN DIEGO

San Diego History Center
The San Diego History Center offers engaging, family-friendly exhibitions that tell stories of San Diego’s past, present and future.

Timken Museum of Art
The Timken collection includes paintings by American, European and Russian artists. Located in Balboa Park. Admission is free.

Old Town
Plan a day at San Diego’s favorite historical site. Museums and restored buildings within the park are free to explore. Kids love the old schoolhouse—the first public school in San Diego County. Visit www.parks.ca.gov and search for Old Town San Diego.

Cabrillo National Monument
Spend time exploring the cultural and natural history of our city. Don’t miss the lighthouse, visitor’s center and fascinating living history events, such as the annual Cabrillo Festival. Entrance fee is per vehicle.

Anne Malinoski is a contributing writer and mother of two boys. She loves to explore San Diego with her kids.

Published February 2018

-----

Fun Educational Places to Go with Kids to Beat Summer Slide

Fun Educational Places to Go with Kids to Beat Summer Slide

San Diego County offers countless places to engage in educational play. If you’re concerned about summer learning loss (aka summer slide), or just want to inspire and stimulate learning while havi . . .

Read more

Family Things to Do in San Diego County by Neighborhood

Family Things to Do in San Diego County by Neighborhood

Looking for things to do in San Diego with kids? Discover local attractions, hidden gems, kid-friendly restaurants and much more, organized by local neighborhoods. Out & About is a great resource . . .

Read more

Ask the Locals: Hidden Spots in San Diego for Families

Ask the Locals: Hidden Spots in San Diego for Families

Hidden Gems for FamiliesEveryone loves to discover little-known spots, especially in their own neighborhood. Plan a day to take the kids and explore hidden gems in San Diego. Tag us on Instagram @sand . . .

Read more

24 Ways to Connect with Nature in San Diego

24 Ways to Connect with Nature in San Diego

There is tons of research on the importance of connecting with nature. With San Diego’s amazing weather and beautiful, natural landscapes it’s easy to increase time outdoors. Find nature anywhe . . .

Read more

Frozen Treats to Beat the Heat

Frozen Treats to Beat the Heat

Cool off this summer with a tasty treat from one of San Diego's favorite dessert shops. Choose from delicious homemade ice cream, gelato, frozen yogurt, Hawaiian shave ice, Italian Ice, decadent mil . . .

Read more

Favorite Hiking Trails in San Diego

Favorite Hiking Trails in San Diego

With San Diego's awesome year-round weather and a plethora of hiking trails for all levels, it's no wonder hiking is a favorite pastime for San Diego families. Here are some favorite local trails, s . . .

Read more

6 Fun Train Experiences in San Diego

6 Fun Train Experiences in San Diego

All Aboard! Looking for a fun family weekend excursion? Climb aboard one of these San Diego train rides. Kids (and parents) will enjoy the chugging of the engines and wind in their hair. Here are si . . .

Read more

Parent-Child Date Ideas in San Diego County

Parent-Child Date Ideas in San Diego County

Spend some one-on-one time with each of your kids this Valentine’s Day. Then make it a habit by scheduling parent-child dates on a weekly, monthly or bi-monthly basis. No matter the time you have, i . . .

Read more

9 Ocean Animal Adventures in San Diego (and Beyond)

9 Ocean Animal Adventures in San Diego (and Beyond)

Do your beach-loving kids obsess over dolphins, orcas and sea anemone? Before summer ends, indulge in some much-needed “vitamin SEA” and plunge into ocean learning at one of these SoCal spots th . . .

Read more

8 Fun Places that Expose Kids to STEM Learning

8 Fun Places that Expose Kids to STEM Learning

Meaningful, experiential learning opportunities for kids and families are everywhere. No need to wait for a class field trip — take the family to one of these local spots or take a memorable day t . . .

Read more

10 Tips for Hiking with Kids

10 Tips for Hiking with Kids

Spring is the perfect time to hit San Diego hiking trails with kids—and hiking is free fun for families. Here are great tips for hiking with kids (ages 3 and older): Refer to hikes as “adve . . .

Read more

Enjoy the Night Sky Stargazing at Palomar College Planetarium

Enjoy the Night Sky Stargazing at Palomar College Planetarium

Enjoy stargazing in San Diego with your family at the Palomar College Planetarium located approximately 30 minutes north of Downtown.With its state-of-the-art digital technology, 50-foot Astrotec do . . .

Read more

Neighborhood Spotlight: National City

Neighborhood Spotlight: National City

Nestled between downtown San Diego and the U.S.-Mexico border, National City’s rich history and bayside landscape offer families a wealth of fun explorations. An excursion to San Diego’s second . . .

Read more

Tips for Visiting Tidepools in San Diego

Tips for Visiting Tidepools in San Diego

The best time to visit tide pools is during winter months when low tide occurs during daylight hours. But there’s more to know about tide pooling than when to go. These do’s and don’ts from Sa . . .

Read more

San Diego Date Nights on the Water

San Diego Date Nights on the Water

Whether you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day, a birthday or just need a night out with your spouse, these date night ideas on the water are sure to please.TAKE A GONDOLA RIDE IN SAN DIEGO. Sp . . .

Read more

San Diego Family Magazine Logo

Be Family Informed – Sign up for our Newsletters below!