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The Venting Booth The Venting Booth

Mom Confession: Why I Hate Field Trips

Posted by on Jun. 15, 2013 at 10:04 AM
  • 6 Replies

Mom Confession: Why I Hate Field Trips

by Sarah Bernard

Look at this photo. Kids on a school or camp outing in search of fun and knowledge. Adorable, right? I remember how excited I was when one of my parents would chaperone a trip. I was so proud of them. I felt like I was holding hands with a movie star. And because of that, when my daughter asked me -- OK, begged me and repeatedly continued to beg me even when I shamefully tried to get out of it -- I went. Here's why I don't want to do it again.

  1. The getting there. Since we live in New York City, that usually means the subway. Taking my own two kids on the subway puts me in a heightened state of alert. Are they leaning on the doors? Getting pushed? Pushing other people? Not touching the dirty poles too much? So being responsible for a whole pack of kids riding the train is terrifying. That's when I think about my suburban friends who remind me that someone always gets carsick on their bus trips.
  2. Other kids are annoying. I hate to admit this because I usually think all kids are awesome and hilarious and adorable. But when you spend hours with them, it becomes apparent that certain ones are bratty or like hitting others or have super irritating laughs.
  3. Your own kids behave badly. Maybe it's the excitement factor but they are not themselves. They don't listen well. They cling. My daughter would never admit it, but I think she would have actually had a better time-- and been more involved in the activities -- if I hadn't been along for the ride.
  4. Bathroom accidents. It happens. An it's nobody's fault. Still, dealing with pee and poop and a kid that's not your own is gross.
  5. Authority issues get confused. When stragglers need to be coaxed across the street or kids need to be reminded that something shouldn't be climbed on/touched/sat on, is that your role or the teachers'? You may say one thing, the teachers another, a different chaperoning parent another still... and the kids don't know who to listen to.
  6. It might rain. It's just water but for some reason rain on a field trip day sends everything and everyone into chaos. There are extra shoes to change into and out of. Umbrellas to keep track of. And if you're looking at your watch, you can add at least 2 more hours onto the deal.
  7. Once you go, they want you to come back. There's the rub. No matter how unpleasant the outing might have been, the fact that you were there was a thrill. That's what your kid will remember and why the time they bring that permission slip over and ask you to volunteer to come along, it still might be hard to say "no."

What's the worst (or best) field trip experience you've ever had?

by on Jun. 15, 2013 at 10:04 AM
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Replies (1-6):
psych_mom
by on Jun. 15, 2013 at 11:55 AM

Never had any issues like this on a field trip. I have chaperoned almost every field trip all three of my kids have had since my oldest was in kindergarten and other than having to occasionally remind a kid or two to pay attention, I have always had fun and looked forward to going.

ms-superwoman
by Member on Jun. 15, 2013 at 12:45 PM

I went to Michigan's Adventure with my little brother for their field trip and it was a blast, I didn't have any problems.

Radellia
by Member on Jun. 15, 2013 at 12:52 PM
I'm looking forward to field trips when my son is older! He's only an infant now, so we've got a while!
ColleenF30
by Lube Girl on Jun. 15, 2013 at 1:04 PM
1 mom liked this

When my Son was in Elementary school it was only select (ass kissers) parents who got to go.

Anonymous
by Anonymous on Jun. 15, 2013 at 1:21 PM

I usually have a great time but when I was doing the cross country skiing, I got a brat in my group.  He whined and was defiant the whole time.  He dropped his rented pole and just kept going. I told him sternly to come back to get his pole and made him come back.  His teacher told me I should have brought him the pole because he is working on "issues".  I let her have him the rest of the day.

ilovemykids732
by on Jun. 16, 2013 at 10:02 AM

When my DS was in Kindergarten... [[5 years old]] we went to a pumpkin patch with a hayride in the fall, all of the kids were great [I got to pick my own group before the trip] I was a teachers assistant twice a week and she made sure that I was able to say who I wanted in my group... I chose my DS and his closest friends... and it just went amazing... They were always at my house anyways... :)

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