5th Grade Field Trip to BMCC
All fifth graders in the Pendleton School District got a glimpse of the community college in their own hometown on Wednesday, April 19th. The students went on a field trip to Blue Mountain Community College (BMCC).
The students participated in a variety of activities in the McCrae Activity Center on the BMCC Pendleton campus. Each group of students rotated to three stations during their 40-minute visit.
Some groups took a tour of the Timberwolves athletic spaces in the basement of the activity center, seeing the weight room, racquetball courts and batting cages. Some groups played a competitive corn hole game or a group communication game. The math rotation had laptop computers set up where students could use Scratch, a programming environment that uses dragging and dropping blocks on a grid. Gary Parker, BMCC Mathematics and Computer Science Instructor, led the station, pointing out different ways students could engage. “This program is good for kids to get an idea of what programming is and for adults to try programming,” Parker said. Scratch is used in BMCC’s Intro to Programming course.
At the library station, Kristin Williams, BMCC’s Director of Library and Learning Hub, had the fifth graders decide if statements she handed out on magnetic tiles were fact or fiction. She then led them through a short activity about websites and how to tell if they are reliable sources of information.
Maybe the biggest hit was the science station, which had a display of two actual pairs of lungs, a healthy one and one damaged by smoking. Fifth graders donned gloves and were able to touch the lungs. They also enjoyed an experiment with liquids poured into small vials, which changed color when the kids shook them. Ann Marie Hardin, BMCC Math, Science & Engineering Instructor, explained it’s a reversible chemical reaction using household substances. Auri, a fifth grader from Sherwood Heights Elementary, was impressed, saying, “I really feel like I’m a scientist right now. Science is my favorite subject in school.”
Garrett Mickalson, BMCC Student Recruitment and Engagement Coordinator, helped run the field trips, along with several BMCC Student Ambassadors. Mickalson said the goal is for the fifth graders to have fun and to keep them engaged.
The field trips are a collaboration between Pendleton School District and BMCC to introduce young students to BMCC and allow them to explore it a bit. “We want our students to go and see the community college right here in their own community and get it on their radar as an option for higher education,” said Matt Yoshioka, Director of Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment for Pendleton School District.
In May, the district’s eighth graders will visit BMCC.