Wednesday, April 29, 2015

A day at the science center

Last week, I went on another field trip with Biscuit's class. I know, I know. I'm a glutton for punishment!

Although, I've said it before, and I'll say it again, I don't know whether his teacher has put the fear of God into those kids or if she just lucked into having a great class, but they were just so well-behaved. Just like they were on the two previous field trips I chaperoned.

This trip was to our local science center. We love the science center. We're members there and enjoy visiting whenever we can. But I have to say that the field trip was pretty disorganized.

The last trip we went on, the teachers and chaperones got an hour-by-hour chart as soon as we walked in the door, and we stuck to it. At this place, it was more fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants. There was one timed event. Everything else was just played by ear.

You know me. I am not good at playing by ear. So I was a little frustrated. It's hard to help keep track of the kids when you have no idea what's going to happen next.

And something really weird happened while we were there that day. Biscuit got jealous.

My boy actually yelled at me. Guess how well THAT went over?!

There's this metal sculpture thing that, if you slide your arms along it, will simulate the flight of a bird. But all the kids saw were monkey bars! They started climbing on the thing, and it's not really meant to be climbed on.

Biscuit and I were the caboose of our group for most of the day. We helped count to make sure all 12 of the kids were still with our group (the class was divided in half when they arrived).

So Biscuit was the last one in line for the bird flight simulator. About six people in front of him, this tiny little girl looked like she was on the verge of breaking her entire body, so I walked up to get her down.

Those who know Biscuit know that every situation requires a back story. So as he was waiting in line, Biscuit was coming up with some elaborate scenario in which he would navigate his way through the bird flight simulator. The only problem was that he wanted to tell me all about said scenario right that second, but I was trying to help the other kids.

"Mom," Biscuit said.

"I'll be back there in a minute," I said. "Let me help her get down."

"MOM," Biscuit said a little more urgently.

"Griffin, I'll be back there in a minute," I said with a little more tension in my voice.

"MOM!!!" Biscuit yelled.

I cut my eyes at him as if to say, "I know you didn't just raise your voice to me, especially in front of your classmates." But I knew better than to actually open my mouth for a minute. I was nowhere in the vicinity of happy.

"Do not raise your voice to me," I said. "I am here as a chaperone, and that means I'm here to help every kid in your class."

Well, he didn't like that one little bit. So the pouting started.

With Biscuit being an only child, he rarely has to share Jeff and me. So he really didn't know how to handle all the other kids vying for my attention. Or when I had to help other kids do things.

We had a long talk about it when we got home. I tried to be careful about what I said to him because it was clear that he was freaked out about not having me all to himself. But I explained to him that me helping those other kids had absolutely nothing to do with how I feel about him.

We'll probably have to have the same talk again at some point. There's one more field trip this year, so it might come sooner than you think.

Here are some pictures from our day at the science center:

I could sit in front of this aquarium for hours.

Time to feed the penguins.

A pile o' otters. It was naptime, and they all snuggled together to sleep.

In the Meet the Animals class, Biscuit got to pet a ferret. The kids met a
bunny and a ferret in the mammals category. They met an Asian chicken
for birds, and they met an Eastern box turtle and ball python for reptiles.

He petted an Asian chicken that has black bones, skin and feathers.

Petting a python. The class leader showed the kids which
direction to rub. Apparently, it's not comfortable for snakes
if you rub against the grain on their scales. And if you've never
touched a snake before, I can tell you that they feel like leather.

Who looks meaner - the kid or the T-rex?

A video that makes it look like dinosaurs are roaming
around the science center caught their attention.

This tunnel has a big bubble on the end that lets you see into the meerkat habitat.

I can't remember the kind of primate that was in this habitat, but they
chased each other all over the place through the trees and on their swings. 

Time to go back to school. Biscuit sat with the teacher's assistant
both ways on the trip. On the way there, she said she and Biscuit
traded jokes. "Some of his were really funny, but some of them just
didn't make any sense," she said. Yep, that sounds about right.
But on the way back, she said, "He was so exhausted that he
said, 'Would it be okay if we just looked out the window at nature?'"

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