ELYSIAN HEIGHTS — For many students who attended Elysian Heights Elementary, one of the most memorable experiences was the annual 6th Grade Field Trip organized by teacher Walter Elmer, who arrived at the school in 1970. When there were enough funds available, a busload of Elysian Heights kids went on camping trips to Yosemite. In lean years, the students were taken to campgrounds closer to home in the San Gabriel Mountains.
Elmer organized many other outings during the school year, including day trips to local events and museums. “I took them all over Los Angeles,” said Elmer, who still lives near Elysian Heights Elementary, where he taught for 26 years. “I don’t think we missed an event.”
Elmer took hundreds of photos of the trips and kept notes of what took place on the outings. An Elysian Heights alum, Brad Jennings, has posted many of these photos on Facebook in what he calls Mr. Elmer’s Archives.
The trips became fewer and far between as school budgets shrank and gas prices rose, said Elmer. That’s too bad, because he thinks those trips were an important part of his students’ education.
“You can’t have them in the classroom day after day after day. They need to experience more than that and discover that there is a world beyond the classroom,” he said. “We had great times.”
Here are a few photos from Mr. Elmer’s Archives, courtesy of Walter Elmer and Brad Jennings.
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