Yesterday I took some time off and went to the zoo with Juliana’s Kindergarten class. This was my first field trip of the year and they did a few things that made it run so smoothly. The students were all wearing white polo shirts and khaki shorts/pants/skorts – most of the other groups were in bright colors so the white shirts were easy to find in a crowd of children. There were 40 Kindergartners (2 classes) and instead of trying to stick together all day, we were split into groups of 10. Each group had a lead teacher and each teacher had a list of every student and what teacher they were with for the day. The groups were free to do whatever they wanted with the exception of meeting for lunch at a specified time. Every child had a partner and each adult in our group was assigned to keep watch over 1 or 2 pairs of kids. We saw a lot of large groups navigating the zoo and they barely stopped along the way to see the animals because they were so focused on keeping the group moving and together.
Of course I had Juliana in my charge and she was the first one to climb on the rocks and walk on the hillside instead of the path and randomly fall down…typical day at the zoo with Juliana. Her partner was her boy equivalent of wandering and climbing and yelling and I had to continually remind them to stay together. At one point the two of them decided to hold both hands and dance and spin their way along the path. Towards the end of the day both of them were holding my hands and he looked up at me and said that I was a really good mom – just like Juliana…wild but moments of sweetness.
I got a new camera lens this week and this was my first chance to play with it. Of course I had to pay attention to my wandering children so I didn’t get to take as many pictures as I would have liked. We completely lucked out with the animals – at almost every stop there were lots of animals is plain sight for the kids. I don’t know that I have ever seen as many elephants out in the field at one time and then 4 of them got in the water. Of course there were ducks in the water nearby at that point and it was more fun for the Kindergartners to quack at the ducks than watch the elephants for more than a minute.
There is a polar bear trap on display along the path near the aquarium and it is open to climb in and out of. I don’t know how many Kindergartners you can fit in a polar bear trap, but I do know it is more than 10.