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I cannot be the only one…who was filled with dread after they glanced ahead at their child’s school calendar and saw the words “Kindergarten Field Trip to The Zoo” printed on the page.  I immediately envisioned Sonny Boy, tears streaming down his chubby little six year old cheeks, crying in a little alcove outside the gorilla exhibit, lonely and lost at the zoo on his first field trip.  My heart started racing and I knew I had to find out all the particulars of this field trip before I could sign my John Hancock on any sort of permission slip.

When the field trip paperwork was sent home in the homework packet, I sat down and studied the information, I mean studied the info, you could have tested me on the details later in the day and I would have aced that test. With all the knowledge about the field trip laid out in front of me, I painfully decided, that even with my reservations about the trip, I would sign my child’s safety off to the school and hope for the best.

I know your thinking, “Geez, cut the cord woman,” but my field trip fears are based on more than just an overprotective Mama standpoint; the school and Sonny Boy’s teacher have given me pause about their commitment to our little learners on more than one occasion.  There was the time that Sonny Boy shared with me the adventure of taking the attendance forms to the office, only to return to the Kindergarten yard to find the gate locked, and after standing around for a few minutes (who knows what a few minutes in a six year old life is, it could have been three or twenty), unsure of what to do, he and his classmate decided to return to the office to ask for help.

Another time Sonny Boy’s ear swelled up to three times it’s natural size in class, it was red, angry, and sticking out funny from the side of his head (you know, funnier than usual, that is). When I asked his teacher if Sonny Boy had complained or was preoccupied by the irritated ear she replied, “I didn’t even know it was red, but Wow look at it.” Yes, “Wow look at it,” was her response.

With these and a few other, “Huh,” experiences under my belt, I think it goes without saying that I was fearful of the schools ability to take my child on a bus, away from our city, get him inside the gates of the zoo, and keep watch over him. Thankfully, a few of my Mama friends were able to get time off of work to volunteer as chaperones on this zoo excursion and promised me that they would keep a watchful eye over Sonny Boy with the same kind of scrutiny as they do watching their own children.

The day of the field trip I was pretty nervous, after I dropped Sonny Boy off at school I kept my eye on the time, trying to imagine what those junior scholars were up to at the zoo....to read the rest of our first field trip experience, please visit my blog here: I Cannot be the Only One...

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