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Travel (Field trips)
Field Trips and Travel Enhance the GMS Curriculum
The hands-on and collaborative activities GMS girls experience in the classroom are enriched by day and overnight trips where science, literature, history, art, and language come to life. Time together away from the classroom also strengthens friendships and class community. Students progressively take trips farther from home throughout their time at GMS, culminating their off-campus experiences with international travel.
Sixth graders begin their year with three days of outdoor adventure, culminating with an all-grade sleepover in the gym. Along with their teachers, the girls spend a day at the beach learning to surf, and two days in the woods going for hikes, playing games, engaging in leadership activities, hosting a talent show, and creating long-lasting friendships. The bonds created on the camping trip support the first few months of classroom cooperative group work. Later in the year, 6th graders attend an overnight science camp at the Marin Headlands Institute north of Sausalito. Day trips also complement the curriculum, including visits to the Filoli Nature Center, SomArts Cultural Center, the Asian Art Museum, and the Collective Roots Community Garden.
Seventh-graders spend a week in the fall at Pinnacles National Park. During this week of outdoor education in a natural setting of great beauty, the girls sleep tents, go hiking, rock climbing, and kayaking, and sing songs and perform skits around the campfire. The trip provides opportunities for the girls to challenge themselves personally as well as to build their skills as members of a team. The Outdoor Ed experience strengthens the bonds of friendship and collaboration established in 6th grade and supplements the centerpiece of the 7th grade emphasis on teamwork: the Entrepreneurial program.
Eighth graders participate in the ultimate cultural immersion experience through international travel. Armed with two years of Spanish instruction, they embark to Mexico on an 8-day journey to El Molino, a rural camp in central Mexico.
Workshops in local ecology, traditional arts and crafts, cooking, animal care, and music are conducted solely in Spanish. They also have the opportunity to visit historic sites in the surrounding area including the towns of San Miguel de Allende, Dolores Hidalgo, Guanajuato, and Queretaro.
A highlight of the trip is a visit to a local elementary school, where GMS students read to the children and leave them with the present of books that they wrote, illustrated and published.
Whether playing soccer, learning to weave or make pottery, or bartering in the town square, GMS girls extend their language skills and broaden their cultural horizons. This intense international travel experience also strengthens the friendships and bonds between the eighth graders, cementing the foundation for strong, effective, and creative collaboration during their final year at The Girls’ Middle School.