Monday, May 23, 2011

Field Trip Lessons.

Here are some tips from a professional field tripper:

1). A 4 hour drive will easily turn into a 5 1/2 hour trip when taking a school bus.

2). If you're already sweaty, letting a child lay on your lap only makes it more unbearable.

3). If you give one kid a piggy back ride you will never let it down and will be the subject of relentless requests hereafter.

4). In reference to the sleeping on the lap part -> kids will tell you that you look pregnant all year long with their little unfiltered brains- until they want to sleep on your shoulder. At which point they may say, "Ms. Richards, I wish you had more pudge... you're uncomfortable!".

5). Take any complements you can get.

6). In reference to piggy back rides -> don't send a 7 year old on a field trip in flip flops. Their feet will start hurting before they have even taken a step. Or they will lose them.

7). When kids smell food, they will immediately become hungry and useless regardless of their hunger level before smelling this food.

8). Learn to tone out the phrases "are we there yet?" and "Ms. Richards, I'm so hungry I could die!".

9). When you're on a trip to view animals at some point in the day the students WILL witness an animal pooping. This will cause them to scream in disgust, but will not stop them from complaining of hunger.

10). Your students will inevitably push and shove other kids/adults/handicapped people out of the way to be in front and there will always be someone who will mistake you for the mother of the children in your group. The only proper response to this is: "yes of course sir, all 12 of these African American children are mine- I don't know what I was thinking! Do you want one?!"

11) At some point in the day you will think to yourself, "I was NEVER this bad when I was a kid!". This is not true. Call your 3rd grade teacher and apologize.

12). Regular headphones do not block out the sound of screaming children- invest in noise canceling headphones.

13). Regardless of how many new cool things your students saw- if asked they will ONLY remember the poop.

14). Children are gullible and it is your duty to take advantage of that. Here are some easy lines that will send them into an instant panic: Before arriving at your destination, "Oh you though we were going to the aquarium? No, we can't go inside, we're just going to ride the bus all day!" After a phone call, Ok guys, the aquarium called and they said that kids aren't allowed. We're going to leave you here on the bus... but I promise we'll take lots of pictures for you!" After your trip, No no no no no! We aren't going home! We all live in Atlanta now. Didn't you say goodbye to your mom this morning??" and you can always make up stories about child eating bears that come out of the forest to attack the buses and eat the kids. WARNING: These do not stop the students from talking incessantly... this is simply for your own amusement.

15). Don't try and sleep on the bus. This is the equivalent to falling asleep with your shoes on at a college party. I guess I should preface this with "don't let your students borrow your pens".

16). Kids are not easily trainable- save your breath and get over it. They are not going to sit down.

17). Regardless of how great the song is- resist the urge to sing along with your headphones on. You will be made fun of because your music is "so beyond lame, ew".

18) ... until they find out you that you have the Jonas Brothers on your iPod. You are instantly elevated to hero status once more.

19) Even though it seems like a good idea at first- don't try and teach your students spanish as a way to pass time. Unless you bought those noise canceling headphones, seniorita.

20). Children are just a strange breed of wild animal- they require NO sleep and they always have to pee.

21). Oddly enough one of them will surprise you with a hug saying "today was really fun!". Which will usually be followed up by another students' snarky comment, "that was so dumb, all we did was look at fish."

22). Riding on a bus with the windows open on the highway is the equivalent to driving in a convertible and your hair will be the evidence of this. DON'T under any circumstance let a child help you fix this- it will only bring you pain and grant you "crazy teacher" status.

23). Not all chaperones will be as committed as you or understand that this is not a chance for them to take a fun trip and that it's not ok to take their own tour separate from the group. Resist the urge to hit these people or publicly berate them. This may be more difficult than dealing with the kids.

24). If left to their own devices kids will always make a terrible concoction out of the things they find on a restaurant table. This usually consists of water, lemon, anything in a packet, salt, pepper, half and half etc. There WILL be a slightly dim child that will be convinced to drink this, which may or may not cause them to puke. We've all done this. Or tried to.

25). Nothing will go the way you planned. Bring super glue just in case.

Enter the highlight reel, these smiles may be fake:

I love whale sharks :)

Oh yeah, 26). No one smiles during a group picture. 


  1. Besides the crazy list, I think it was nice of you to take them to an aquarium.

    oh white teacher, you're the best!

  2. Oh my gosh, this made me laugh so hard...and feel really bad for you. I'm not sure I could handle more than two kids on a field trip let alone a whole group. Haha.

  3. Honey - this could also be titled "A day in the life of a mom" HAHAHAHAHAHA!! Loved it!!!


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