Hands-On History: CHS Students Visit Shelburne Museum … and Why Field Trips Are Important

Colchester High School tenth-grade students recently made a pilgrimage to Shelburne Museum as part of their American Experience classwork.

The American Experience course is a unique class that combines the study of US history and American literature in three historical periods.

CHS American Experience classes participate in the annual Shelburne Museum visits as a way to gain a hands-on perspective of many of the aspects taught in the classes; Shelburne Museum’s vast collection boasts an impressive assortment of primary-source documents and interesting artifacts that directly relate to the historical and literary topics the students study as part of the class. Making real-world connections to abstract classroom learning is important because doing so often piques student engagement and attention—thus encouraging out-of-the-box thinking and enhancing learning. Field trips often serve to strengthen students’ observational skills and allow them to become more actively engaged in their learning, providing additional sensory activities and expanding their curiosity.

Field trips also create an extension of the classroom—and that speaks directly to Pathway C of the Colchester School District Vision and Strategic Plan 2012–2017, which states:


“We wish to ensure an academic environment in which real-world relevancy meets the classroom. This environment must:
• be experiential;
• provide internships and community service within the building and the community;
• complement and enrich classroom learning; and
• move beyond physical and structural confines.”

You have spoken. We are listening.

For more information about the American Experience curriculum, please contact Colchester High School at (802) 264-5700.

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