Tuesday, November 15, 2011

November Thankful #15

In honor of Thanksgiving, I'm doing daily thankful posts. I'd love it if you'd join me by commenting here or on MichiGal's Facebook page.

November 15

Today I am thankful for chaperoning field trips. When I was in school, field trips were my favorite part of school. Now that I'm a mom, I sign up to be a chaperone for just about every single field trip Bethany, Connor, and Lucy go on. Unfortunately there's often only enough room for a certain number of parents, so I don't always get picked. 

Some places I've been on field trips with my kids:
  • Apple orchard (many times)
  • Farm
  • Science center (I can think of 3 different ones)
  • Theatre
  • Henry Ford Museum
  • Fire station
  • Detroit riverboat tour
  • Circus
  • Zoo
  • Nature center (I can think of at least two different ones)
Just today I accompanied Bethany's fifth grade class to the Imagination Station in Toledo, Ohio. My observation of the day is that 10-year old girls do not walk, they run, or maybe flit would be a better description. I basically spent my day chasing after my group, as they flitted from one exhibit to the next. The Imagination Station is over an hour from school, so that wasn't the most comfortable bus ride I've ever been on. And I wasn't feeling stellar either, but I wouldn't have missed it for the world.

Why do I love field trips and chaperoning for them so much? 
  • No amount of book learning can beat real world experiences.
  • A change of pace and change of scenery is great for kids (and me) from time to time.
  • Being someplace other than school with friends is such fun for the kids.
  • One-on-one time with my kids. Even though there are dozens of other kids around, those other kids aren't siblings - and that makes all the difference in the world.
  • Getting to know the other parents and the teachers a little bit.
  • Getting to know the other kids. I think this one is so important. Seeing my kids interacting with their peers is very telling. I can place names with faces. Many of the kids know me and are comfortable talking to me. I know that once they're in middle school, these opportunities will be few and far between, so I have to take full advantage now.
I am so thankful that I can usually arrange my schedule and line up babysitters so that I can chaperone field trips. My mother-in-law came to pick Mattie up at 8:00 a.m. today, then picked Lucy up from school, and then took Lucy and Mattie to work with her until I could get there to pick them up.  Wow! Now that's a dedicated grandma. If not for her help, I would not have been able to go. I am thankful that my kids are able to go on multiple field trips every school year, and that they always want me to chaperone.

Do you like to go on field trips with your kids? 

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