I took my grade 5 class (9 – 10 year olds) to the big museum today. We will be studying ancient civilizations, so we had some time to look around the galleries (about an hour – not nearly enough time), eat lunch, do our lab (really cool – kids got to handle actual artifacts from ancient Egypt and speculate about their purpose), and then have a guide for looking at a few masterpieces in the ancient Egypt hall – including a real mummy. I confess, I am usually pretty stressed during field trips. I do enjoy them and I enjoy the learning, but I probably need to do this a few more years before I can truly enjoy it. I was lucky to have an excellent parent volunteer though – she has done lots with girl guides and sparks so she really knew how to take care of the group that I put into her charge.
Now, what was really interesting to me is this – as soon as we got in the kids started taking photos. It seemed to me that they weren’t even looking at what they were seeing – it was all about taking photos. It made me wonder about the difference between truly experiencing something when you are there, and taking pictures for some purpose – other than living in the moment? I wonder how often I do that.
Things did settle down – and since they were not allowed to take photos during the lab, they had the chance to get into that. Also our guide did not allow photos while she was talking, so the kids had to stop and really look and listen.
I don’t know if this was the excitement of being in the big city, in a museum that many had not been to see … or the excitement of being 10 years old and on a field trip. Or is this part of the digital age? The kids were allowed to bring i-pods, DS systems, etc to use as cameras, and many used them on the bus – some even used them in the museum!
Sign of the times? Or am I just out of date here?