Being the site of so much American history, any of your high school students will benefit from the experience of visiting Washington DC. Filled with culture, architecture and historical monuments, the city has plenty to enrich all types of educational tour.
Situated along the Potomac River, the capital of the United States is uniquely under the jurisdiction of Congress and is therefore not part of any US state. The Mid-Atlantic climate sees around 16 inches of snowfall each winter and its hot and humid summers have temperatures reaching 300C. The 68 square miles incorporated within the distinct are about one fifth parkland, including Rock Creek Park, the fourth oldest national park in the US and home to diverse wildlife and plant life.
Museums And Historic Sites
Among the top ten buildings of the American Institute of Architecture, six are in the Washington area, including the White House, Washington National Cathedral, Thomas Jefferson Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Capitol Hill and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. For students interested in the various styles of construction reflecting the periods of American history, it is also worth visiting Georgetown University and the Ronald Reagan Building. For a glimpse into the past and to bring their history lessons to life, no trip to Washington is complete without visiting the National Archives and seeing the Declaration of Independence, United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Dotted around the area, the museums and galleries of the Smithsonian Institution bring together some of the most important and famous artefacts and pieces of art in the country.
Music And Dance
For High School trips to Washington DC where the focus is upon music and the arts, there are plenty of sites integral to the cultural output of the East Coast. The John F. Kennedy Centre for the Performing Arts is home to the Washington Ballet, the Washington Opera and the National Symphony Orchestra. Other locations and organisations, including Marine Barracks, Arena Stage and the U Street Corridor, each have their own story to tell about the evolvement of different styles of music and their place within American social history.
If your students are desperate to catch a game whilst in Washington, all the major sports and several minor ones, are proudly played in the area and Washington is one of only 12 American cities to have a team from each of the four main men’s professional sports. The NBA Wizards and the NHL Capitals play at the Verizon Centre in Chinatown, the Nationals play Major League Baseball at Nationals Park, the D.C. United Major League Soccer team play at RFK Stadium and the NFL Redskins are at FedExField.
Whatever the age and interests of your students, High School trips to Washington DC provide scope for all kinds of educational, political and cultural experiences. Look through a sample trip itinerary to see for yourself just how much this important capital city has to enthuse students who are keen to learn more about the United States.
Tom Brown is a travel writer who specialises in travel for educational benefit and has organised volunteer work opportunities around the globe. He submits content for several websites and blogs. Any opinions expressed will be his own and not that of the publisher.