Ahh, field trips. As a kid, I loved field trip day. It meant an outing away from school and to hang out with friends that weren’t in my class. It also meant only half listening to the parent chaperones and the poor teacher who was trying to maintain her headcount. After going on three school field trips with my son, I can honestly say there isn’t a lot that has changed. So here are some things to keep in mind when you get the first field trip permission slip.
Volunteer if You Can
Every class is different, and some may only need a few chaperones, but if you can swing it, volunteer. I would recommend following the bus, but if you choose to ride, it can be amusing. The last field trip of first grade, the bus on the way back to school had no air conditioner. It was full of stinky hot 1st graders singing as loud as they could. I will admit, it made me laugh, but I was so ready to get back to the quiet (and air conditioning) of my vehicle. The other thing about volunteering is you get to see the school version of your kiddo. You get to see them interact with their friends, and they get to show their parent off. It’s also an excellent time to see what our teachers go through, and how under-appreciated they really are.
Pack a Lunch
Most field trips will require a packed lunch, in a disposable bag. I would suggest packing things that are easy for your kids to open and maybe pack a little extra. Field trips usually mean the lunch schedule may be a little different and your kiddo could be starving by the time they actually eat.
Dress Them Appropriately
If the class is going somewhere like the zoo, make sure they have on comfortable clothes for the season and shoes they can walk around in. I would also add, shoes that are velcro or stay tied are the best. Also, if you know, they will be outside, put on sunscreen and maybe a mosquito patch.
Talk to Your Little About Staying With the Group
Some excursions will break the kiddos down into smaller groups with a chaperone for each. Please explain to your child the importance of staying with their assigned group and listening to the parent that they are with. While parents and teachers do the best they can, a rogue student can occur. I went with my sons class when he was in kindergarten to Lego land. About two hours into our trip one of the little girls took off running from me. Luckily the teacher was right there, had me watch her group and took off after the escapee. I still suffered a small panic attack.
Have Faith Momma
I know it can be hard, but if you can’t be there, have faith that those that are will do everything they can to keep an eye on your kiddo. I know I do when I volunteer. And the teachers are amazing. I am in awe every time I go on a trip at just how great they are.