Round out your child’s homeschool or virtual school education with these fun and educational field trip ideas around Central Ohio!
No doubt school looks different for many of us this year! Many Central Ohio school districts are starting out the year virtually or in a hybrid model. Many families have chosen to homeschool for the first time or to enroll in a fully digital academy! Our family has enrolled in a digital academy for the first semester and while it’s not what I anticipated for this year, I’m hoping to make the most of it by supplementing our screen time with some fun activities and local field trips!
I’ve put together this list of field trip ideas for the upcoming school year! Please make sure to check with each location before visiting as their guidelines and activities will most likely vary throughout the year.
Field Trip Ideas for Homeschoolers and Virtual Schoolers in Columbus
These Central Ohio locations would make perfect field trips for kids who are homeschooling, doing virtual school or a hybrid model during the 2020/21 school year!
Franklin Park Conservatory would make a great field trip this year! When you visit, make sure to visit the Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation Children’s Garden!
The Children’s Garden is practically a full-fledged attraction in itself, but it comes at no additional cost to visitors of the Franklin Park Conservatory!
Access to the Children’s Garden is included with admission or membership and can only be entered through the Conservatory. On Community Days, the first Sunday of each month, residents of Franklin County and the City of Columbus can enter the Conservatory for free with your valid ID from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM! (Get your timed ticket in advance this year!)
Take an Open-Air Safari tour through the almost 10,000 acre park where animals are free to come up close to your safari (but no touching)! The tours are 2 – 2.5 hours long and take place in an open air bus.
There are two stops on the tour where you can get out of the vehicle. At the first stop, you can take a short hike down to the lake to feed catfish and to feed birds in an enclosed aviary.
The second stop on the tour is the Carnivore Center where you can see wild African dogs, cheetahs and more!
The tour guides are very knowledgeable and share a wealth of information about how The Wilds came to be, how animals have been saved through their conservation efforts and even little tid bits of information about the individual animals you may come across on your journey!
Continue reading for more of what to expect at The Wilds and more fun things to do with kids in Guernsey County!
Ohio Caverns is about 40 minutes north of Springfield and 1 hour from Columbus. Ohio.
Ohio Caverns is the largest of all the caves in Ohio. There are several tour options available to see the caverns. My family took the Natural Wonder Tour which took about an hour. Afterwards we did gem mining! The caverns are so fascinating!
Continue reading for more about Ohio Caverns and more kid-friendly things to do in nearby Springfield, Ohio!
This year, Stratford Ecological Center is offering Self-Guided Learning Pod Experiences for groups of 10 or less. You can explore the land, hike the trails, visit the livestock, tour the gardens and more with your group!
You must register in advance and the sessions are $100 and last for 3 hours.
Ohio Wildlife Center is home to animals who have become injured and are not able to be released into the wild. While regular visitation hours are not available to the general public at this time, small private tours for up to 15 guests can be scheduled.
Keep an eye on their website for virtual education programming that is in the works!
Click on the link to read about our visit a couple of years ago to get an idea of what there is to see and learn!
In 2020, Ohio History Center is offering Family Field Trip Days! Advanced, timed tickets are required. There will be 2 field trip dates each month and each month will have a different theme. Admission is $5 for children and $7 for adults. Kids 3 and under and members are free!
Of course the Zoo is a great field trip idea! There are lots of learning opportunities at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium and Adventure Cove is now open featuring 10 California sea lions and 4 harbor seals!
The Zoo is currently open from 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM during the weekdays and open until 7:00 PM on weekends. You must have a timed ticket to visit. Members can visit any day after 2:00 PM without a reservation.
Continue reading for more about the Zoo and the Top 10 Things to do with Kids in Columbus, Ohio!
Housed in an impressive mansion, the Logan County History Center is filled with a surprising amount of displays and things to see!
The museum is filled with rooms that rotate displays. Some of the displays we enjoyed were communication devices through the years, the civil war and old toys!
The Logan County Transportation Museum was added in 2014 and includes examples of transportation throughout history from Conestoga to railroads to planes. My kids enjoyed seeing the many vehicles on display! This is a definite stop for kids who love vehicles!
Battelle Darby Creek Metro Park is home to a herd of bison!
There are a couple of different pasture areas - a winter pasture and a summer pasture. There is a bison observation area about a 1/2 mile walk from the Nature Center. You can park at the Nature Center and walk south to find them!
Click the link to read more about the bison and 4 other cool things to do outdoors at the Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks!
The prairie area at Whetstone Park in Clintonville is a peaceful place to walk, look for butterflies and other wildlife! I did not expect to come upon a deer in the middle of Whetstone Park!
There are large clear paths for walking and enjoying solace in the middle of the city! You can learn about the prairie and and there is an educational sign where you can learn about the pollinators who live in the prairie!
Click the link for more info about the Whetstone Prairie plus 4 other ideas for outdoor activities for kids!