Field Day at Glacier Ridge Elementary

Date May 17, 2008

“Field Day” — a long-standing tradition at elementary schools across the country — was this past Friday. For kindergarteners, fathers were encouraged to attend to bond/chaperone with their kids. In a moment of intoxication/exhaustion/hypnosis/I’m-not-exactly-sure-what, I agreed to go. Keeping in mind that crowds make me uncomfortable, and handling more than one kid at a time is doubly so, it’s fair to say that I was anticipating the sixth or seventh circle of Hell. It’s all about expectations management. I don’t think I actually got past the fourth.

The structure of the 2-hour exercise was that kids were assigned to groups of four. The older kids were on their own, while the kindergarteners each had a parent to herd them around. I drew the crew of Carson, John, Tommy, and Austin. Tommy’s dad arrived soon, so we weren’t aggressively outnumbered.

Austin, Tommy, John, Carson

Each group of four got a 5×5 “bingo card” that had the numbers 1 through 24 (and a free space in the center). As they went to each station, they got a number marked off their card. Any time they got enough Xs to complete a horizontal, vertical, or diagonal set of boxes, they got to go to the prize table to pick up a prize. I think we knocked out 18-20 of the stations — wound up with 5 bingos.

The activities were many and varied.

Hippity-Hop Race

Sack Race

Water Cannon Shooting (Tommy and Carson)

Egg Relay

Washer Toss

And there were some activities that require a bit more description. For instance, take a kiddie pool and put a bunch of marbles in it. Do this on the concrete, by all means. Then, get 4-5 kids to take their shoes off and climb in the pool. When the referree says “Go,” they try to pick up as many marbles as they can…with their feet…and put them in a dish outside of the pool. The volunteer working this station actually admitted that she could use a beer…!

Or, there was this one: Line up four kids in a row, holding hands, with a stack of hula hoops on the ground next to them. They then need to pick up each hula hoop and pass it down the entire chain without every letting go.

We crossed paths with Benton a couple of times. Once was at a frisbee tossing station:

His friend Josh is right behind him in all red, Alec is in the striped shirt, and Nick is the last kid in the line. This entire gang was at our house Friday night (along with Collin and Hunter) for Benton’s much-delayed birthday party. I’ll let Julie blog on that, as I escaped to the movies with Carson.

We also ran into Benton at the prize table on one of our trips. Seeing as I had told Benton that I just might come to school some time so I could take a picture of him not wearing his camouflage fleece pullover…I had to get a picture to prove that it has not actually grafted to his skin.

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