Lincoln Trail sees the state on field trip

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By Kelly Cantrall

A days-long field trip at Lincoln Trail Elementary School made the entire state its focus.

Fifth-grade students at Lincoln Trail in Elizabethtown traveled to various parts of the state as part of field trip that is a 37-year tradition at the school.

The Kentucky field trip took students to Cumberland Falls, Mammoth Cave, Civil War battlefields and other locations as a way to study the history and geography of the state. It took them just across state lines, too.

The trip started with an environmental focus, but it’s taken on more social studies aspects since then, teacher Rachelle Grey said. Fifth-grade curriculum includes Kentucky history and geography, as well as gaining a historical perspective. It gives students the content as well as bonding time, she said.

While traveling to the various sites, students have a guide book with them that contains information and daily questions they must consider, such as how people would have adapted to the physical environment and the reason a person would pick a location to live based on the geography.

The trip starts with a visit to Natural Arch in Parker’s Lake, followed by Yahoo Falls in McCreary County, Cumberland Falls in the Daniel Boone National Forest, Levi Jackson State Park in London, Cumberland Gap National Historical Park in Tennessee, Martin’s Station in Virginia, Mill Springs and Zollicoffer Park, National Cemetery in Nancy and Mammoth Cave.
The trip highlights Kentucky's geography, including the Appalachian Mountains, and its historical sites, such as Civil War battlefields.

“It’s engaging to our students,” Grey said, and teachers reference the trip throughout the school year.

Rachel Langford, 10, hadn’t been to most of the places the classes visited, which is why she was excited for the trip.

“So it’d be like a first-time experience for me,” she said.

Her favorite destination was Martin Station because the fort was made by hand.

Jakob Sherrard, 10, enjoyed Cumberland Falls the most.

“The sound of it was just so relaxing and you could see the mist coming off the water,” he said. “It was so beautiful.”

Langford said learning through field trips puts more of an emphasis on the lesson at hand.

Sherrard agreed.

“Well, if you go there you can feel like you experienced it,” he said.

Kelly Cantrall can be reached at (270) 505-1747 or kcantrall@thenewsenterprise.com.