Experiencing Arts and Technology 2017-18

also known as the Field trip class

Available to Students in Grades K-12.  Bus transportation is provided on most trips for enrolled students and parents.  Younger siblings who are not Hamilton students are not permitted on the bus.  If you have preschoolers you want to bring along, you may drive separately and meet at the location.  All students enrolled in the class will have their admission fees paid for by the school.

For students in grades K-12 this will count as one of your 5 classes.  

There will be 7 field trips offered first semester and 7 second semester.  Most field trips will be scheduled on Mondays, with some Friday exceptions.  For those taking the bus we will meet at the middle school before boarding the bus.  Departure times may vary depending on the trip, however most field trips will be between the hours of  9:00am-2:00pm due to bus availability.  In addition to the field trips, the teacher, Mr. VanFarowe and/orMr. Suhusky, will email virtual field trips weekly right to your home so your students can have great experiences online in addition to the trips they take throughout the year. 

Students no longer have to meet at the school before a field trip.  If you live closer to a field trip destination, you may meet the group there. If you plan to ride the bus, IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT YOU COMMUNICATE THIS WITH US IN THE COMMENT SECTION OF SIGN UP GENIUS. If  we don't have a comment or note that you will be riding the bus, we will plan to see you at the field trip destination. THANK YOU!!

When a field trip date is approaching you will receive an email from Sign Up Genius with information about the field trip and a link to sign up. IMPORTANT!! Please remember to include number of enrolled students, number of adults and number of non-enrolled siblings (when it applies) so that we can provide an accurate count to the filed trip coordinators. 

Watch for details such as lunch plans and payment arrangements as each field trip gets closer. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to email Rochelle at rvanderk@hamiltonschools.us or call (269)857-9594. 

If available, click on the field trip title to learn more!


  • Tulip City Gem & Mineral Show - Friday Sept. 15 - This is a very fun field trip which we have taken in the past that will be sure to interest many students, there are lots of fossils, gems, rocks, and demonstrations to enjoy. There will not be bussing provided for this field trip, we will meet at the Soccer Stop Sportsplex in Holland.  More detail and times will be provided when available.
  • Swisslane Dairy Farms - Dairy Days - Monday Sept. 18 - As farms continue to disappear, the need to understand where food is coming from grows. Dairy Discovery is committed to educating the non-farming public of West Michigan about life on a large, modern, family farm by engaging them in interactive and enjoyable experiences at SwissLane Farms.
  • Gull Meadow Farms - Monday Oct. 2 - Gull Meadow Farms has worked very hard to make their farm a fun and educational experience for everyone. Do your children know that peanuts, potatoes, and carrots are grown underground? How different does an 80 year old tractor look from tractors that are made today? Does a pumpkin float, if so, why? These are just some of the things your children will know by the time their tour ends.  Join us on an adventure that includes apple picking, a small pumpkin, and of course along with many exciting activities, cider and donuts for a treat!! 
  • Boulder Ridge Animal Park - Monday Oct. 16 - Venture through the reptile house before checking out the ostrich, lemurs, kangaroos, monkeys, or crossing a bridge to get a closer look at the 11ft alligator in the pond below.  From there, head over to the bird aviary or meander through the petting zoo to see some of Boulder Ridge’s newest additions and take advantage of the rare opportunity to possibly pet a baby zebra, wildebeest, or water buffalo.  This will be a fun filled opportunity to learn about the many animals that call Bouler Ridge home!!
  • Air Zoo - Monday October 23 -  This is a field trip you will not want to miss The Air Zoo is a highly charged, multi-sensory atmosphere that goes beyond anything you've ever seen. It's like no place else on Earth! 
  • Cook Nuclear Power Plant - Monday Nov. 6 -  The newly remodeled Cook Energy Center offers students a fast-paced energy adventure to let them Discover the Nature of Power. There are numerous hands-on interactive exhibits, and plenty of supporting data for those who love to get into the details.
  • Gilmore Car Museum - Monday Nov. 27 - The Gilmore Car Museum is more than just a collection of beautiful cars, it is an educational opportunity like no other.  You will get to see the moving history of an industry that shaped a state and connected a country. Visit the Shell Station that’s right out of the 1930s, the Blue Moon Diner that dates back to World War II era, and make sure they see the only set from a Disney® film that has ever been displayed outside of Walt Disney Studios.
  • Engine House No. 5 Museum and Allendale Fire Department Tour - Monday Dec. 11 - Engine House No 5 was originally constructed in 1880 on the banks of the Grand River in downtown Grand Rapids Michigan on the corner of Leonard and Monroe Streets.  This historic station served the Grand Rapids community for 100 years. This historic station is now in Allendale and serves as a museum, we will be visiting this museum and also taking a tour of the current Allendale Fire Department. 


2nd Semester Field Trips 

  • January 22 - Science & Light at The Lost City - Science and Light at The Lost City is a great way to engage your class with the electromagnetic spectrum and have a great time doing it!  Bring your elementary class to a Science and Light session at The Lost City for an affordable field trip and learn how laser tag works! First, kids are taught about the different sections of the electromagnetic spectrum and how they interact with the laser tag equipment. They are taught about reflection and refraction, and how flourescent materials seem to glow under UV light. Best of all, the class gets to experience everything they learn first-hand by playing laser tag! Fun and educational, field trips just don't get any better!

  • January 29 - Kevin Kammeraad - Ideas are Everywhere
    This is Kevin’s most popular program! It's an interactive author/writing/reading presentation focused on specific examples of where ideas can come from (real life experiences, memories, feelings, friends, reading, etc.). Kevin shares insights on writing and revision while showing rough drafts and journals from when he wrote The Tomato Collection. This presentation is well paced, interactive, and filled with the right amount of puppetry, music, poetry, and humor. This is Kevin’s “author visit” program and it motivates students to write and create! Kevin has been doing variations of this presentation since 1998 and over the years he has continued to "fine tune" it. The current format of this program now includes Kevin's brand new puppet theatre.

  • March 5 - Butterflies are Blooming - Frederick Meijer Garden - The annual Fred & Dorothy Fichter Butterflies Are Blooming exhibition at Meijer Gardens is the largest temporary tropical butterfly exhibition in the nation. Tropical butterflies from around the world fly freely in the Tropical Conservatory every March and April.  Throughout the exhibition, there is special educational programming and the Lena Meijer Children’s Garden offers butterfly-themed activities.

  • February 19 - Grand Rapids Public Museum  - We will be going to check out the new exhibit on Mythology called Dragons, Unicorns & Mermaids which traces the natural and cultural roots of some of the world’s most enduring mythological creatures from Asia, Europe, the Americas, and beyond.  and Water’s Extreme Journey which transforms the visitor into a drop of water entering a watershed, an area of land where water drains and collects into a shared reservoir. As visitors will discover, a watershed can be right in their own neighborhood, or as big as the Rocky Mountain region! There will also be time to check out the other things the museum has to investigate.

  • March 16 (date change)- Kent Recycling Center Tour - Take a walk through a sorting facility designed to accept residential recyclable materials from all over West Michigan. Recyclables are sorted according to material type, then prepared for shipping to the next processor by pressing the recyclables into bales.  (we will add an additional date of March 23 if this fills up)

  • April 16 - Binder Park Zoo - Discover the often overlooked wonders of the heart of Binder Park Zoo.  Learn fun facts and little-known details about the wide variety of animals that call this section of the zoo home.  Tour stops include, but are not limited to: snow leopard, black bear, lemur, and wolves.  Take a walk on the wild side and explore Binder Park Zoo’s award winning Wild Africa exhibit.  Discuss the ins and outs of this 50 acre zoo expansion and the amazing African animals that inhabit it.  Tour stops include, but are not limited to: the savannah (giraffe, antelope, etc.), colobus and mangabey monkeys, Aldabra tortoise, and red river hogs.

  • May 7 - Critchlow Alligator Sanctuary - We are home to hundreds of reptiles who have come to us through adoption, donation, rescue, or from other institutions.  We have worked with local and state authorities with animal control needs and we also work with schools and universities with educational programs and internships.  No animals are bought, sold, or traded at the Alligator Sanctuary.  We provide a comfortable home and care for these animals for the rest of their lives.