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  1. #45641
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Boston area, OK, Newton, right by Heartbreak Hill
    I chaperoned middle schoolers to NYC once as well. When I called my husband mid-trip, he asked what I did that day. Me: I counted to 8.

  2. #45642
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Quote Originally Posted by bundabergdevil View Post
    Having been an 8th grader on a DC trip, I commend your cat herding skills!
    One key is to always schedule either your morning or afternoon activity near the Mall, so you can take them to Union Station for lunch. One eternal truth that echoes through the generations is that teenagers love food courts.
    Another key: run them absolutely ragged during the day...walk a lot and maintain the tightest schedule reasonably possible so a) there's not enough time for them to find trouble, and b) they're exhausted in the evenings. On my couple of NYC trips, they'd always be so worn out by about 9pm that I'd dump them into their rooms and then head immediately to the nearest train station to get out into the night and see my friends and family in the city.

  3. #45643
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Outside Philly
    Quote Originally Posted by wilson View Post
    One key is to always schedule either your morning or afternoon activity near the Mall, so you can take them to Union Station for lunch. One eternal truth that echoes through the generations is that teenagers love food courts.
    Another key: run them absolutely ragged during the day...walk a lot and maintain the tightest schedule reasonably possible so a) there's not enough time for them to find trouble, and b) they're exhausted in the evenings. On my couple of NYC trips, they'd always be so worn out by about 9pm that I'd dump them into their rooms and then head immediately to the nearest train station to get out into the night and see my friends and family in the city.
    I went on a Europe trip in HS. We still managed to find trouble despite loaded days.

  4. #45644
    Quote Originally Posted by TomJoad View Post
    ClemmonsDevil, in case you not aware, proof of full vaccinations is required for all non-essential businesses (restaurants, bars, etc.) beginning today. I don't know how they will deal with visitors, but you will need proof anyway to enter the country. I assume you've been told by your hosts the current requirements for entry.

    The linked news story lists all the businesses now requiring proof of vaccination: https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/important...oday-1.5591806
    Thanks for sharing and yes. I have to get tested no more than 72 hours before heading to Canada.

  5. #45645
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Durham, NC
    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn.Devil.91.92.01.10.15 View Post
    Just below boiled peanuts.
    I am one of those Southerners that believes that that should NEVER be done to a peanut!!!

  6. #45646
    The LTE is haunted…

  7. #45647
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Durham, NC
    Quote Originally Posted by Bostondevil View Post
    I chaperoned middle schoolers to NYC once as well. When I called my husband mid-trip, he asked what I did that day. Me: I counted to 8.
    Unfortunately, it was a class of 9...

  8. #45648
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Boston area, OK, Newton, right by Heartbreak Hill
    Quote Originally Posted by Phredd3 View Post
    Unfortunately, it was a class of 9...
    There were 2 chaperones per 8 kids. We had one in our group that kept wandering off. The other parent would take the 7 while I'd go make sure we hadn't lost number 8. After a day and half of this behavior, I took him aside and said, "Look, I'm not your mother, you're 14, and your behavior is beyond annoying. This is the last time I will make everybody else wait while I go find you. Keep up with the group or not, but it's on you from now on, because, again, I'm not your mother and at this point, I do not care if we lose you." And then I stopped making sure he was with the group when we moved on. He did make it back to Massachusetts so I assume he kept up.

  9. #45649
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Durham, NC
    Quote Originally Posted by Bostondevil View Post
    There were 2 chaperones per 8 kids. We had one in our group that kept wandering off. The other parent would take the 7 while I'd go make sure we hadn't lost number 8. After a day and half of this behavior, I took him aside and said, "Look, I'm not your mother, you're 14, and your behavior is beyond annoying. This is the last time I will make everybody else wait while I go find you. Keep up with the group or not, but it's on you from now on, because, again, I'm not your mother and at this point, I do not care if we lose you." And then I stopped making sure he was with the group when we moved on. He did make it back to Massachusetts so I assume he kept up.
    Yikes. I was uncomfortably close to reality, it sounds like.

    Good for you to make a 14-year-old responsible for their own behavior. It is amazing what a little fear will sometimes do to an individual's ability to pay attention. My son was like that. When there was a known backstop (like a reminding school teacher), he just didn't bother with tracking his own behavior, even for things like deadlines for activities that were very important to him. The best thing that ever happened to him was his two best friends joining the Boy Scouts. Suddenly the everyday expectation was to perform without prompting, or to get dressed down - in front of your friends, of course - if you didn't. It literally changed the way he lived his life.

  10. #45650
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Quote Originally Posted by Bostondevil View Post
    There were 2 chaperones per 8 kids. We had one in our group that kept wandering off. The other parent would take the 7 while I'd go make sure we hadn't lost number 8. After a day and half of this behavior, I took him aside and said, "Look, I'm not your mother, you're 14, and your behavior is beyond annoying. This is the last time I will make everybody else wait while I go find you. Keep up with the group or not, but it's on you from now on, because, again, I'm not your mother and at this point, I do not care if we lose you." And then I stopped making sure he was with the group when we moved on. He did make it back to Massachusetts so I assume he kept up.
    Along the same lines, when I took high schoolers to NYC at the end of the school year, I’d prep them ad nauseam for the fact that it was their responsibility and theirs alone to keep up with their money and budget appropriately, and that they’d need to figure things out if they screwed that up. Lo and behold, I had a kid lose his wallet on the first day of the trip, and his friends had to float him for the various handful of meals they were to budget for (some were prepaid, so this kid never would have starved; he just would have had to squirm through a breakfast here and a lunch there). He found his wallet, full of cash, at the bottom of a rat’s nest of a backpack on the way to the airport to come home.
    That was the day when, at LaGuardia, I’d had rather enough and the place was (in typical fashion) a clusterf*ck. I excused myself to “use the restroom,” went to the nearest bar, and ordered a triple bourbon on the rocks, which I slugged in one go. The drink was $40, but worth the cost. Fellow bar patrons were like “wtf dude?” I explained my situation (hours of weather delay, utterly slammed terminal, end of 5+ days herding other people’s teenagers at the end of the school year), and that $40 drink cost me nothing, because America at least occasionally has a soul.

  11. #45651
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vermont
    Quote Originally Posted by wilson View Post
    I coordinated a trip to DC for the entire 8th grade when I was 30. That was the first biggie. Since then, I've averaged I'd say like 2-3 overnights per school year (Covid strictures have of course changed that in the last couple of years).
    have you maintained a reasonably low casualty rate? I enjoyed doing it, but it requires a lot of concentration and vigilance. And hey, Wilson's $40 bourbon was well worth it.

  12. #45652
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Quote Originally Posted by budwom View Post
    have you maintained a reasonably low casualty rate? I enjoyed doing it, but it requires a lot of concentration and vigilance. And hey, Wilson's $40 bourbon was well worth it.
    Yes! Almost all of the kids I've taken on overnight trips have come back in one piece.

  13. #45653
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Boston area, OK, Newton, right by Heartbreak Hill
    Quote Originally Posted by Phredd3 View Post
    Yikes. I was uncomfortably close to reality, it sounds like.

    Good for you to make a 14-year-old responsible for their own behavior. It is amazing what a little fear will sometimes do to an individual's ability to pay attention. My son was like that. When there was a known backstop (like a reminding school teacher), he just didn't bother with tracking his own behavior, even for things like deadlines for activities that were very important to him. The best thing that ever happened to him was his two best friends joining the Boy Scouts. Suddenly the everyday expectation was to perform without prompting, or to get dressed down - in front of your friends, of course - if you didn't. It literally changed the way he lived his life.
    He was the oldest kid in the group. It was mostly 7th graders with a few 8th graders. He was one of the 8th graders returning for his second year on this particular trip (school newspaper staff made the trip every year, 7th graders all got to go, 8th graders had to be one of the editors.) The word I would use to describe him at that time in his life is "entitled". I guessed at the time that the previous year his mother had been one of the chaperones and he didn't expect things to be any different. I learned a long time ago that, much as I love kids (yes, even teenagers), I don't love all of them. I do love all babies though.

    And I wasn't quite as harsh as I made it out, I did keep counting to 8. What I would have done if he'd wandered off again was tell the faculty member in charge of the newspaper staff who lead this trip every year that I couldn't handle this student and would he please take him into his group. That would have been way worse than what I did do, that would have affected his grade.

  14. #45654
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Quote Originally Posted by Bostondevil View Post
    ...much as I love kids (yes, even teenagers), I don't love all of them. I do love all babies though...
    [mulls sharing his hot take on babies, since those tend to elicit flurries of conversation here]

  15. #45655
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vermont
    Quote Originally Posted by wilson View Post
    [mulls sharing his hot take on babies, since those tend to elicit flurries of conversation here]
    The only thing I know about babies is that they ALL look like Nikita Khruschev, no matter what the parents might tell you.

  16. #45656
    On the way back from our Grand Rapids mission trip, we stayed in the burbs of Chicago and took the train in for the day. When counting the group, a youth was missing. I found him on the train platform instead of inside where everyone was supposed to be. I got some strange looks from people when I yelled at him "Joe Smith*, you get back inside with the group. If you do it again, I will take you straight to O'Hare and put you on a plane back to your parents!" He stayed fairly close the rest of the day.

    I did apologize for yelling at him later. I explained that when I didn't know where he was, it scared me and that was why I yelled. His parents explained that he was always doing that to them, starting at a young age. (Very smart, independent kid.)


    * Not is real name.

    I have now done 14 mission trips with adults and youth - main person in charge for the last 8 or so. Only came back 2 short once.

  17. #45657
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Quote Originally Posted by budwom View Post
    The only thing I know about babies is that they ALL look like Nikita Khruschev, no matter what the parents might tell you.
    Babies are boring and funny looking.

  18. #45658
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vermont
    Quote Originally Posted by wilson View Post
    Babies are boring and funny looking.
    And I have heard unconfirmed rumors about them soiling their little white pants.

  19. #45659
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Outside Philly
    Quote Originally Posted by budwom View Post
    The only thing I know about babies is that they ALL look like Nikita Khruschev, no matter what the parents might tell you.
    That’s funny. We thought ours looked like Frank Sobotka from the Wire.

  20. #45660
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Outside Philly
    Quote Originally Posted by wilson View Post
    Babies are boring and funny looking.
    Bell Peppers, Sour Beer, TLC, the state of Utah, close toed shoes, the future of the human species…

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