‘The Best Experience Hands-Down:’ Library offers STEAM Field Trips

May 8, 2024

Categories: Kids

Did you know that students of all ages can now experience STEAM Field Trips at the Billy Graham Library?

Introduced in 2012, the popular academic curriculum founded on STEAM activities (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) has been embraced by teachers across the U.S. 

The Billy Graham Library recently established an innovative full-day STEAM field trip for students K-12, combining critical thinking, teamwork and problem solving—while weaving in spiritual lessons along the way.

Seven-year-old Robert* walked into the Billy Kim Hall for the Library’s first STEAM field trip and proudly told one of our volunteers, “I’m happy to be here today—I know about Billy Graham.” Robert added with a smile: “Did you know he was born in Charlotte but went all over the world?”

Students experiencing the interactive Journey of Faith

Students begin their day with an interactive science project. As they work in groups, they learn more about who Billy Graham was as a kid:

  • What was Billy’s favorite sport? (Baseball)
  • Why is the Library in the shape of a barn? (His parents were dairy farmers)
  • What chores did Billy and his brother Melvin do before and after school? (They milked 20 cows and shoveled manure.)
  • How much did a quart of milk cost in 1930?  (a nickel)
  • Did he grow up dreaming of becoming a preacher? (No. He wanted to be a professional baseball player.)

In addition to taking the hour-and-a-half The Journey of Faith tour, students, teachers, and parents can explore the life and ministry of Billy Graham while engaged in hands-on science, technology, engineering, art, and math activities. All lesson plans are grade-specific and meet both North Carolina and federal educational standards. 

Billy Graham Library staff assisting students in a budgeting activity

Second grade teacher Tamera Shuler visited the Library numerous times over the years and was eager to bring her young students to learn about the history-making evangelist.  “I was thrilled to learn about this field trip,” she said.

Lisa, a 3rd grade teacher from Mooresville, North Carolina, added: “This has been the best experience hands down. We will definitely come back again.”

“Combining faith and academics is what I do at home,” said one homeschool parent with children ages 7 to 15.” Thank you.”

The Journey of Faith concludes with a Gospel presentation and invitation to commit your life to Jesus Christ, a staple of Billy Graham Crusades through the years.

“When I was at the Billy Graham Library, I learned that he was an amazing preacher that taught people about Jesus,” Bethany, 8, wrote about her experience and shared it with her mother. “At the end, I asked Jesus to take away my sins and stay in my heart forever. Afterwards, I felt really happy and felt brand new inside. I hope to be like Billy Graham one day.” 

*Name changed to protect privacy

Are you a teacher or parent looking for a way to engage your students while nurturing their faith? The STEAM program is free, other than the cost of lunch in the on-site Graham Brothers Dairy Bar. Groups must schedule in advance by contacting the Library at LibraryStudents@bgea.org or 704-401-3200.  

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