The High School Student News Site of The American School in London

The Standard

The High School Student News Site of The American School in London

The Standard

Taking advantage of our city

London is one of the greatest cities in the world, filled with endless opportunities of theater, museums and historical monuments, making it one of the most culturally diverse places. Thousands of tourists travel to London yearly because of these destinations. As a school, we are unbelievably fortunate to have these resources at our doorstep. Having these incredible opportunities at our disposal, it would be a disservice from the school if we didn’t take more advantage of them.

For any High School students who have been at the school since Middle School, they would remember many trips either to museums, or places such as the Lake District to aid our learning.

Now, in my third year of High School, I have only been on one field trip, which was to the British Museum during my freshman year, which I absolutely loved. This revelation upsets me and makes me ask the question: Why wouldn’t we use London to aid our learning?

In every aspect of school, there are ways to link London to our classroom to benefit our learning. Science classes can take trips to laboratories or the science museum; social studies can visit the British Museum; art classes can visit galleries.

This semester, I am enrolled in Dramatic Literature and Performance. The class entails reading plays and then going to about six productions over the course of the semester. The locations of the plays are all over London, exposing the students to different areas we might not have encountered on our own. Not only does this class allow the students to explore new parts of London, but it allows them to dive into the culturally rich city and use resources around us to enrich our learning. This is one of the few classes that I have taken where London is used to aid our learning.

I understand that because of the Advanced Placement (AP) system it is more difficult to take field trips due to needing to spend a certain amount of time on a given unit, but those are only a handful of courses offered at the school. Due to the block system, classes that are either before or after lunch have the time to take students out into London; whether it’s to a museum, art gallery or lab to help them better understand what they’re learning, and to connect it to the real world, proving that time isn’t an issue. If classes left during lunch, they would have more than two hours for their trip, and could even go after school hours.

With that being said, I do understand that things such as time, money, chaperones, health and safety and other things are all things that need to be taken into consideration, but are all things that have feasible solutions. Additionally, I recognize that there are some classes such as AP Psychology and AP Art History that take field trips, but I don’t think that we are using London enough as a resource in all classes.

We have this unbelievable resource at our doorstep, but I don’t feel that we are using it to it’s full capacity. To be fair, I don’t think it’s even possible to use it to its full capability, simply because of the vast amount of activities that are available. With that being said, that’s a wonderful problem to have. I understand that the administration has recognized that this is something we should be taking more advantage of, but I believe that it should be a higher priority. Our mission statement states to “develop the intellect and character of each student by providing an outstanding American education with a global perspective.” Not using one of the greatest resources in the world to its full capability disallows us to realize the full potential of the administration’s goal.

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