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post #41 of 52

I'd talk to some of the other parents before raising a big stink, but definitely talk to the teacher about your concerns.  Honestly, it sounds like a fun field trip to me, though I can see how a sensitive kid wouldn't have a great time.  I'd actually prefer this greatly over the usual candle making thing.  I dislike the emphasis on "quaint handcrafts of ye olden days" that a lot of living history museums and most school projects concentrate on.  It makes the past seem very quaint and wholesome and fun, when it was actually extremely dirty, hard, and dangerous.  I think it also teaches kids that handwork and simple things like baking belong in the olden days, and helps reinforce our cultural norm where we lack respect for production and doing things by hand.  Don't get me wrong: I love visiting living history museums, but they do present an extremely idealized view of what life was like for practically everyone.  

 

I'm assuming they served other things for the kids to eat than onions, right?  Was it an onion-based meal, or were the kids just encouraged to try a small piece?  And I've never been on a boat where there wasn't a lot of yelling.  When you're sailing, things have to be done quickly and there really can't be much room for goofing off.  I can see how he'd find it unfair if he got yelled at for other kids fooling around, but maybe they thought that he was fooling around too, if the rest of his group was.  If he was supposed to be in charge of these other boys, the teacher should have stepped in at that grouping if she thought that their personalities conflicted and your DS couldn't get them to behave.  Sometimes that sort of thing works, and sometimes it doesn't.

 

I think the success of this sort of thing really depends on the child's temperament, and it's unfortunate that they didn't give you a heads up about what was this trip was going to entail.  The school should have been more clear, so that you could have kept him at home.

 

As for the lack of female chaperones, I assume it had to do with sleeping quarters.  For example, if the boys slept on deck and the girls slept in the cabins, then there could be only room for the female teacher down below while plenty of room for extra men to sleep on the deck.

post #42 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by lach View Post
As for the lack of female chaperones, I assume it had to do with sleeping quarters.  For example, if the boys slept on deck and the girls slept in the cabins, then there could be only room for the female teacher down below while plenty of room for extra men to sleep on the deck.


This kind of supports what I was wondering about, though. If the boys were sleeping on deck, and the girls in cabins, then they were definitely having different experiences, yk? I'm not saying that the boy/girl disparity of experiences did happen, though - just that it could have.

post #43 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by lach View Post

 

As for the lack of female chaperones, I assume it had to do with sleeping quarters.  For example, if the boys slept on deck and the girls slept in the cabins, then there could be only room for the female teacher down below while plenty of room for extra men to sleep on the deck.


 

My guess was that they were aiming for equal numbers of chaperones of each gender so that both sleeping quarters were covered.  Since the teachers were likely female, they needed male chaperones to balance things out.
 

post #44 of 52
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies.  Parents were given a heads up that it would be "harder" and kids would take turns staying up, keeping watch.  I thought my son (easy going temperament) would be fine.  But he also thrives on harmony and is sensitive, so for him, I don't think this was the learning experience it was meant to be.  We both learned other things.

 

Here is a email response from a dad (a psychologist) who chaperoned on the trip: 

 

"Sorry for the delay.  Your email was sent to my junk pile.  anyway, the trip was a HUGE success!!!  the kids did amazing.  The ship actors were fantastic!!!"

 

So... perhaps this was just my son.  My sister has pointed out that he (from what I have told her and others have told her) is especially sensitive to being reprimanded.  If I raise my voice (not yelling at him) he says it's yelling.  He feels like he is being yelled at.  (I'm the same way BTW.)

 

So maybe this whole thing just pushed all the wrong buttons on him.  Maybe it wasn't the trip per se.

 

I can't go back and undo the trip.  All I can do is learn from it and be more questioning the next time.

 

post #45 of 52
In the psyc field even when off we are sort of expected to be on, or at least notice if one of the people nearby are in distress. Maybe he's not a child psych? I'm sure he was with his own child(ren) and paying most attention to them...
post #46 of 52
Thread Starter 

txbikegrrrl - and my son doesn't show he is in distress anyway.  He tends to hide it.  

post #47 of 52

Could it be that being put in charge of his group (and their noncooperations) was too much stress on him and made everything seem more upsetting.  

post #48 of 52

With all due respect, it sounds like you are stressing more about this than your son.  I'm a father and have been on this exact trip with two of my children.  Perhaps the crew was a different set of people, but I recall their behavior as just exposing kids to a "taste" of what a ten year old crew member would have experienced on a ship centuries ago.  As you did not experience the trip firsthand, I can tell you I see how these experiences when done right, can teach kids to appreciate the luxuries they often take for granted as well as the sacrifices made for our freedoms today.  The crew led many hands-on activities that taught the kids geography and history and isn't that what we want as parents as opposed to only being handed a textbook to sort through history.  My kids ate onions and were told why and how it sustained early explorers.  They ate hard tack and it was awful then we had our usual meals.  The crew asked the adults to take a hands off approach and the kids did very well.  Kids are told to pull ropes and work as a team and pay attention.  They have no choice.  There's no complaining allowed--simply, you are expected to pull your weight.  I can't think of a more valuable lesson than that especially for entitled, coddled kids.  If your son's experience was so awful, have him detail it in his letter honestly and respectfully.  Thank the crew for their time and efforts and explain to the crew how things could have been better.  Teach your son to cope and find solutions with less intervening--the same lessons that crew is trying to teach our kids.  Good luck.

post #49 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by jds1215 View Post

With all due respect, it sounds like you are stressing more about this than your son.  I'm a father and have been on this exact trip with two of my children.  Perhaps the crew was a different set of people, but I recall their behavior as just exposing kids to a "taste" of what a ten year old crew member would have experienced on a ship centuries ago.  As you did not experience the trip firsthand, I can tell you I see how these experiences when done right, can teach kids to appreciate the luxuries they often take for granted as well as the sacrifices made for our freedoms today.  The crew led many hands-on activities that taught the kids geography and history and isn't that what we want as parents as opposed to only being handed a textbook to sort through history.  My kids ate onions and were told why and how it sustained early explorers.  They ate hard tack and it was awful then we had our usual meals.  The crew asked the adults to take a hands off approach and the kids did very well.  Kids are told to pull ropes and work as a team and pay attention.  They have no choice.  There's no complaining allowed--simply, you are expected to pull your weight.  I can't think of a more valuable lesson than that especially for entitled, coddled kids.  If your son's experience was so awful, have him detail it in his letter honestly and respectfully.  Thank the crew for their time and efforts and explain to the crew how things could have been better.  Teach your son to cope and find solutions with less intervening--the same lessons that crew is trying to teach our kids.  Good luck.


I know that this is a very old thread (and I am curious OP what ended up happening, if anything), but I just want to jump in and respond quickly to the PP:

I never in a million years want to teach my child that having "no choice" but to be bullied and treated poorly is ok. Does this make him entitled? Damn straight..entitled to being treated with grace and politeness. Teaching about history is all well and good (and I say this as a credentialed secondary school history teacher) but this trip is akin to putting people on a slave ship to "teach" them what its like to be chattel. That's not good teaching its sanctioned abuse. Lower class children were basically regarded as slaves in the nineteenth century...we've thankfully moved beyond that. What on earth is the benefit of recreating such an environment?
post #50 of 52

Sorry, having problems editing.

 

post #51 of 52

NM

post #52 of 52

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