ConstructionKids offers field trips designed to supplement classroom learning in a fun and creative way. Hands-on learning works well for both traditional and inclusion classes and is an antidote to the overload of screen-based experiences that children encounter today. We encourage both a left-brain and right-brain approach, so that a child’s imagination and problem solving skills are equally developed.
Our programs start with a ConstructionKids 101, our safety lesson on how to use the real tools needed for the project. Then, after a design phase (2D or 3D) which precedes assembly, children construct their projects, real things, which they bring back to the classroom (or home).
ConstructionKids’ Field Trips are offered as single-session units or as a series. They can take place either in our workshop or at your school. Each program is 2 hours long and includes a project that children build and take home.
Construction Kids Workshop (BLDG 92): $19/student, minimum fee of $475
Your School (Offsite): $21/student, minimum fee of $525
Insured & DOE-approved Vendor:
ConstructionKids is a DOE-approved vendor and can provide proof of insurance upon request.
Incorporate Construction Kids Into Your Curriculum
Have an idea for a program? Or just curious about possibilities for your grade or area of study? Contact us to discuss how we can create a special program just for your class or grade.Contact Us
Toddler - PreK Specific Field Trips (Cell Phones/Pizza/Clocks/Smiley Faces)
Each field trip is designed to introduce young students to using hammers and nails safely. The Hammer 101 lesson starts the field trip emphasizing listening skills, pattern recognition, fine motor skills, and the ability to follow directions. The projects are designed to foster persistence, self-control, problem solving, and a positive self-image through successful completion of the project.
Name Plate (Grades PreK-2)
Students design and build their own name plate. The name plate can be hung on any door, chair or desk to label the student's personal space. Name plates at CK teaches young children manual dexterity, builds self-confidence, and teaches them to safely use hammers and nails, while allowing students to practice fundamental textual skills in a practical way.
Maraca (Grades PreK-3)
The maraca is ancient. Originally indigenous to parts of Latin America, South America and the Caribbean, maracas were used as instruments in rituals. Now they are mostly seen as musical instruments. The ConstructionKids maraca is an introduction to the theory of sound. Students start by building a 4 sided square maraca and then design the exterior to meet their unique personalities.
Turkeys (Grades preK-3)
The ConstructionKids turkey is a great project to complement studies of the Colonial Period. Both whimsical and challenging, it is one of our family favorite projects. After children learn to use hammers and nails, they learn the names to different parts of the turkey, and then we discuss what might be real and imaginary additions to our birds. We also discuss the wood (age of our pieces, growth rings in summer and winter) and properties of wood, including how to make the pieces stick to each other without glue or nails! Each child takes home their own turkey.
Geoboards (Grades PreK-3)
Children make their own geoboards! Geoboards are mathematical manipulatives, a simple-to-build toy that aside from being fun to play with, teaches basic plane geometry concepts and vocabulary. Our Geoboard field trip program can be adapted for pre-K to 3rd graders. Each child makes and takes home their own project. Aligns with Common Core in several areas, from reading (making letters) to math.
Lenape Wigwam (Grades K-2)
Limited availability. A perennial favorite. Children build a Lenape wigwam in the classroom out of a frame of arched poles covered with heavy curved brown cardboard (to simulate oak bark). The wigwam can stay in the class indefinitely as a gathering place. Includes a discussion of the materials used by the Lenape.
Restaurant and Meal Study (Grades K-2)
Children create signs for their favorite restaurants, and/or work in small groups on larger signs.
Building and Cities, Iconic Buildings (Grades K-2)
We offer studies of a variety of iconic buildings for younger children, including the Empire State Building, the Parthenon, a bank, a hospital, etcetera. Call us to discuss creating a workshop around a particular building or structure that your class is studying.
Birdhouses (Grades K-3)
Our birdhouse is designed to be used indoor or outdoors. The birdhouse is designed to accommodate many local species (chickadee, titmouse, nuthatch, downy woodpecker). They can also be used for decor in your home. The front opens for cleaning. It is easy to understand and quick to build.
The field trip teaches children how to use hammers and nails. We show examples of homes that birds built for themselves in the outdoors, and we discuss how birds use birdhouses. Each child takes home their own bird house. (For outdoor use, the birdhouse will need to be coated with exterior paint or polyurethane, not included in field trip.)
Transportation Study (Grades K-3)
After learning how to hammer and use nails, children individually build a small vehicle which they take home. Vehicles can be cars, planes, or rockets.
Flower/Plant Study (Grades K-4)
From flowers, to trees, we create a variety of plant life.
Skeletons (Grades K-4)
Children learn how to use hammers and nails to make a self-portrait skeleton. We discuss the names of seven major bones, the difference between a bone and a joint, and some of the other parts of the body. Each child will bring home a backpack-sized skeleton.
An awesome seasonal project (Halloween), or for anytime of year when studying the human body. Appropriate for grades K-4, aligns with Common Core units about body, self, vertebrates. Larger skeletons and expanded bone-study units for older children available upon request.
Animals (Grades K-4)
We offer a wide range of animal-themed projects, including birds, underwater animals, animals of the forest, and animals that fly. Contact us to discuss your animal curriculum.
Guitar Making (Grades 1-4)
We guide students through the construction of a simple 4-string guitar and encourage colorful personal painted designs. This is a multi-session program.
Balance (Grades 1-4)
Children learn about balance by building a segmented balancing beam. We start by exploring why and how a balance beam works and how to make balancing our body easier. Children learn to use hammers and nails to build their own beam to take back to school. This is a good field trip as an introduction to simple concepts of balance. Appropriate for grades 1-4, aligns with Common Core ‘Balance’ unit and keyword vocabulary.
Children learn about balance by building individual birds that balance on a high wire (in this case a thin wooden dowel structure that the teacher can take back to class). We discuss how objects balance with an emphasis on determining where the fulcrum and center of balance is. We discover how making something balance can seem at times like a magic trick, but in fact it is not magic at all, but a well-controlled balancing act! Children learn how to use hammers and nails, and each child brings home a project. Appropriate for grades 2-4, aligns with Common Core 'Balance' unit and keyword vocabulary.
Balancing Rocket Ship
Children learn about balance by building their own rocket ship. We adjust the balance of the rocket to change the directional orientation from lift-off to cruising position. It’s a smart toy that children will love playing with at home. We discuss how objects balance with an emphasis on determining where the fulcrum and center of balance is. We discover how making something balance can seem at times like a magic trick, but in fact it is not magic at all, but a well-controlled balancing act! Children learn how to use hammers, nails, bolts and wrenches, and each child brings home a project. Appropriate for grades 2-4, aligns with Common Core 'Balance' unit and keyword vocabulary and Simple Machines (lever, screw).
Boats and Flotation (Grades 1-4)
We study a range of boat types. We also discuss how ballast and hull shape contribute to buoyancy. Using simple tools, children build a small boat to take home.
Trees, Wood, and the Story They Tell Us (Grades 1-4)
We teach about our sustainably harvested wood, touching on the sawmill and forest from where we get our wood. We examine individual pieces of wood to discover clues about the forest, climate, and age of the tree where the wood came from. As we say in our workshop, one can read a story in a board of wood just like we read a story in a book. We learn about other kinds of wood products and construct a small project to take home.
Subway Cars (Grade 1-4)
An icon of urban life is reimagined. Students will start with the basic structure of a subway car, and then are allowed to embellish and personalize it from our wood buffet.
Buildings and Cities, Community Study (Grades 1 - 4)
Children make their favorite building from three categories: residential, commercial or industrial. The students all start with basic core building pieces and can use as many pieces as they would like from our wood buffet to personalize their building. The program emphasizes motor skills, spacial perception, mathematical design elements, revision and repair.
Marble Run (Grade 1 - 5)
Children make their own marble runs! Marble runs are complex machines that, aside from being fun to play with, teach basic angles, forces, and mathematical concepts and vocabulary. Our marble run field trip program can be adapted for K to 5th graders. For older builders, we incorporate more complex design elements to develop their spatial skills and practical reasoning abilities.
Truss Bridges (Grades 1-5)
We build real truss bridges and learn about the different shapes and kinds of bridges and trusses. We then load test our bridges… drama and excitement as we pile on the weights to see how much they can hold.
Simple Machines (Grades 2-3)
After learning about levers, wheels, axles, and pulleys, kids work in small teams to solve a variety of large object motion challenges. They also construct a small project with hand tools, while identifying the simple machine properties of the tools.
Brooklyn Bridge (Grades 2-5)
One of our most popular programs, the Brooklyn Bridge Project can be done in a variety of scales, and levels of complexity, in multiple 45 minutes to 1-1/2 hour sessions. The large scale Brooklyn Bridge project is an installation piece done on your school grounds, while our model Brooklyn Bridge projects can be done either at your school or in our workshop.
Build a Model of the Brooklyn Bridge: 4 sessions
Session 1: Learning How To Use The Tools We Will Need
Includes a discussion and samples of the tools and materials used to build the Brooklyn Bridge.
Session 2: Building the Towers
Includes a discussion of the caisson and tower materials and assembly.
Session 3: Installing the Main Suspension Cables and Beginning the Roadway
Includes samples of wire cable, discussion of beams and how roadway gets its strength.
Session 4: Installing the Vertical Cables
Includes samples of how cables are attached and tensioned.
Session 5 (optional) : Building a Large-Scale Brooklyn Bridge at Your School
In a coordinated event which takes place usually during the morning with several classes simultaneously, students work together to build a Brooklyn Bridge that is 60-feet long, with towers 10-feet high. The towers are hammered together and raised by the kids in a dramatic fashion, evocative of a colonial barn raising. The towers are then ballasted with 500 pounds of sand, installed bucket brigade-style by the children. Last comes the roadway which is assembled with 100 wood beams bolted together and suspended by vertical cables hanging from the main cables.
The finished bridge and roadway can be left on site for a week.
This is a community-wide project; parents are encouraged to attend so they can watch the fun building process. Here's a 2013 video about building a Brooklyn Bridge at the Brooklyn School of Inquiry.
Advanced Geoboards (Grades 4-5)
Children make their own geoboards! Geoboards are mathematical manipulatives, a simple-to-build toy that aside from being fun to play with, teaches basic plane geometry concepts and vocabulary. Our Advanced Geoboard field trip introduces concepts of design and planning through the introduction of a new tool, the hand drill. Each child makes a custom Geoboard, which they design themselves.