The last time I chaperoned a field trip to the Manitoba Museum, was when Bugs was in grade 4. I'm pretty sure I swore a blood oath to NEVER do it again.
I did it again. But it wasn't bad this time. Yes, the group was Kindergarteners. Yes, it was an all day event. Yes, I had to bring the baby. But I was prepared for the absolute worst this time. And, I brought a huge bag of Cadbury MiniEggs and two cans of sugarfree Redbull. I figured, even if they were crazy, I'd be so hopped up on sugar and caffeine I wouldn't care. I was right.
But these kids were better behaved than I expected. It was me and the other adults who were slightly out of control. And I take responsibility for that. It was the bloody redbull and chocolate. We gave up watching the kids at around noon. It's not like they could go anywhere- we had the coats locked up, and it was cold as EFF outside.
Anyways, we dealt with the children like grownups should. One of the teachers has a purse the size of Texas, so we took turns using it as a shield to hide behind and eat chocolates (we weren't stupid enough to show the kids the candies). The kids were being distracted by the 'magic show of lights', so the other moms, the teachers and I had a blast giggling away and playing "hide the baby". Every time I turned around someone else had the stroller and had wandered off.
It was almost a vacation for me actually. Better than the last bloody time. I still get cold chills of horror about that trip. Oh, God, talking about it has triggered a flashback.
The last time, I had a group of 2. Bugs and one of his blasted friends.
I THOUGHT the kid was a good kid; but, when his teacher forgot to give him his Ritalin, it made my day a nightmare. The boys RAN through the museum, right to the end, discovered that they'd taken the wrong path some place and missed the "Nonsuch" boat. So they turned around and ran back again. It's normally a 40 minute walk through the museum, and we did it in under 20 minutes-TWO TIMES. I'm not that fit. It damn near killed me. Then we had to wait for the other groups to finish. I spent the waiting time physically dragging the young man down from the stuffed bison and off all the other looky- don't- touchy- stuff within our vicinity.
Three hours of full on meth- head, speed freak, ADHD kid behaviour, THEN the teacher remembered the chill pill. Thanks lady. Not my favourite memory of a field trip. But that still doesn't explain how today, with 45 children aged 5 years old, was an easier, less exhausting day than last time watching only 2 kids. I'm so thankful that my kids aren't ADHD, because I couldn't handle that type of behaviour all day every day.
So, I guess the moral of the story is this: bring redbull and candy on school trips. Let the kids destroy everything. When you leave and the museum staff shoot you dirty looks, make sure they know what school you came with- so they'll never let your school come back. Then you won't ever have to chaperone a class trip again.