A Field Trip Lament

So, it has happened once again.  My dd asked if we could go to the Florida Museum of Natural History today and I agreed provided we finished up our morning chores and school work.  She did what was asked and we all went to the museum.  Now my ds is almost 21 months old and is definitely a baby on the go.  He does not like to be in a stroller, he does not like to be held, and he does not like to be in the same spot for more than 3 minutes at a time.  He also does not particularly like to nap.

I always feel that I am shortchanging my dd when we go out on field trips.  Today, for example, they were making paper butterflies in the art center.  I tried to entertain my ds with puzzles, books, shells, coloring, etc. but this only slowed him down for 6 minutes – not enough time for my dd to finish her art project.  I feel terrible when I have to constantly tell her that we need to move (“baby on the move” is our battle cry) because her brother is ready to go to the next thing.  Today she even told a person that she should not start an activity because she would not have enough time to finish it before her brother left the area.

When I look around the museum it seems that my toddler is the only one going at a blinding pace throughout all of the exhibits.  How do other parents keep their children occupied in one spot for longer than 5 minutes?  I used to know the answer to that question because my dd was the baby that would sit in my lap (or near me) and work on an activity for some time.  And I think that is what makes it so difficult for me now – I know that she would happily sit for quite some time engrossed in whatever she found interesting.  So far though, she doesn’t seem to mind too much that life and all its exhibits rush by at such a fast pace.  But I do.

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One thought on “A Field Trip Lament

  1. I don’t have any real advice for you, but I totally understand. I had the same problem with my daughter and son. She is oldest and he is 3 years younger. He was/is always on the go and she likes to take her time on complete a project or look at exhibits.

    It didn’t help for spontaneous visits, but when we had family visiting I would always try to plan at least one museum type trip so I would have another adult to stay with my daughter while I went through at his speed.

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