Eighth Graders Embark on Their First Field Trip Since Before the Pandemic


On February 17, 2022 eighth graders at Chagrin Falls Middle School boarded the bright yellow school bus on their way to the Cleveland Museum of Art and various restaurants. For the past month, students studying Chinese, Spanish, and French delved into the art and cuisine of that culture.

In Spanish classes, students studied Picasso as they analyzed a Spanish novel Los Agentes Secretos y el Mural de Picasso by Mira Canion.

According to eighth-grader Gus Bando, in French class, students learned about artists and their specific pieces. Also, students learned about museums located in France along with other landmarks that connect to art like churches and architecture.

(Charlotte Kleid)

In Chinese class, students studied museum vocabulary learning how to say words like “museum” “Painting” and “artwork.” According to eighth-grader Kaya Sherman, the group also learned how to form opinion sentences about art.

On this rainy Thursday afternoon, everyone gathered together in the grand entrance of Cleveland’s very own Museum of Art. The day was filled with scavenger hunts, recreating famous art, learning about the history behind famous works, and even discussion and writing about art in the students’ language of study.

Eighth-grader Isabella Thompson shared that she “liked seeing the connection between what [she] learned in class, looking at Van Gogh’s Dr. Gauche, and the paintings in the museum with Monet and much more.”

After exploring sculpture, paintings, historical artifacts, and utilizing creativity in the interactive art exhibit the bus dispersed all throughout Cleveland. Students were on their way to try new foods! Spanish students headed to the family-owned “Mallorca” where they tried seafood paella and other traditional dishes. Spanish classes just began their food unit where they will learn restaurant vocabulary!

French classes ate at Le Petit Triangle’, where Thompson shared again that they ate “croque Monsieur, and a tasty nutella crepe”. Chinese students visited the CAM International Market, an Asian grocery store, where they purchased a wide range of Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese and other snacks.

Eighth-grader Jennah Hamdan said that this was her favorite part of the trip as she “enjoyed seeing how cultures intertwined or differed,” and of course trying the delicious new treats! They ended the day eating at Hunan by the falls where they ate dumplings, fried rice, noodles and shrimp plates.

Students who do not study a language were immersed in Italian culture inside the Museum, and afterwards when they dined at Trattoria in Little Italy.

They learned even more from Mrs. Marisa Valletta, the eighth-grade social studies teacher who is fluent in Italian as she led their trip. Mrs. Valletta says that, “The students had a great time learning about Italian art and culture! They were so invested and curious during our art scavenger hunt at the Cleveland Museum of Art, and then we all happily dined on a meal of salad, cavatelli and pizza at Trattoria in Little Italy. The experience was truly bellissima!”

Students were able to make connections, explore art, culture, cuisine, and truly learned so much from this valuable experience!