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Teacher: Linda M. Boltersdorf who teaches at St. Lucie Elementary in Ft. Pierce, FL. Linda M. Boltersdorf can be contacted at boltlinda@cs.com.

Name of Best Practice: Golf Field Trip

Rationale/Purpose of Event: The purpose of this field trip is to enhance the students knowledge of the game of golf. It allows the student to practice classroom skills in a "real life" environment. This activity also allows the school and community to work closely together and enhace the business partner relationship.

Suggested Grade Level: 3-5

Materials Needed: Parent letter describing the field trip, Local Golf Club, Your district field trip paperwork

Golf Field Trip

In the classroom, have a unit where you teach your kids the skills involved in the game of golf--especially putting. It is a good idea to teach them the terms as well such as bogie, double bogie, par, eagle, etc. Introduce the students to using a golf score card by making one of your own. List each hole with a par score and a place to write their score. Set up a nine hole putting course using equipment you have. For example, mats with golf cups work great outdoors and indoors. Have the students complete the golf course and record scores. At the end of the round they add up their score. Use a shot-gun start so everyone has time to complete it. To end your unit on golf, plan a field trip to a local golf club which is where this Best Practice starts.

Most local golf clubs will be glad to work with you and your school. Call the head pro and let them know you would like your students to get other golf experiences such as pitching, putting, and driving of the range. When I take this field trip I take five fourth grade classes with 22 students per class. The students are divided by classes and do various stations. At each station there is a golf pro. Some examples of stations are: Putting, and driving off the range, and pitching out of the sand traps. Students are at each stations 15 minutes depending on the size of the groups. The golf professionals work with each child as they take turns practicing their skills.

This is also an excellent opportunity for the students to practice the safety skills addressed in class. It also puts the game into perspective as a whole (e. g., scoring, game play, etiquette). Parent volunteers can also help assist students who need extra practice. After the lesson, the classes eat lunch at a park near the course.

When the students return back to school I provide the classroom teachers with golf worksheets and puzzles to end the day with. This ties in other subject areas such as reading, writing, and math. Make sure you take pictures for the yearbook and have the golf course sign an business partner agreement. You can use pictures to make a thank you poster for the club. The students will love to write about what they learned and the golf professionals really enjoy the feedback.

Variations:

Use this idea for any unit. I have taken field trips for gymnastics and for free swimming lessons.

Teaching Suggestions/Tips:

Get approval with your principal and grade groups. Get approval to attend the field trip. My principal gets a sub for me and allows me to use a temporary duty assignment. Be sure to make it simple for the classroom teachers. This is how I show off my program and I try to make it as easy on the teachers as possible. I have found this was an excellent way to address some of our county's guidelines for yearly evaluations.

***BE SURE TO CONTACT THE LOCAL PAPERS AND NEWS CHANNELS. GREAT PUBLICITY FOR THE GOLF COURSE AND SCHOOL.

Adaptations for Students with Disabilities:

Ask the golf professionals what accomadations they can make. Many clubs have adaptable clubs for students in wheelchairs. Adapt to each students individual needs as necessary.

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Posted on PEC: 8/24/2002 and has received 65 votes.

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