Sam Thompson

A Thai field trip

Where's our risk assessment?

During my government high school's summer program that I somehow got drafted to help with, we had the opportunity to take our students to Safari World in Bangkok. I've never been on the "adult" end of a field trip, so I had no idea what to expect... and this being Thailand, the trip certainly didn't disappoint.

First, at least if you're from the USA, a field trip is pretty much a big deal. You must have permission forms signed and checked, adequate student-to-teacher-and-parent ratios, risk assessments, emergency plans... pretty much the same thing you'd need to do before undertaking a CIA mission. Actually, in my home county in Georgia, the school system stopped field trips altogether because there was simply too much paperwork and costs involved. But, not here in Thailand!
Permission forms weren't present. There was a roster that we used to see who all should be on the bus before leaving the school, but that was about it. No risk assessments, no liability forms, no nothing.

And that said, I must say: the students, all 40 or so of them, were far more well behaved than any field trip I've ever been on! The cultural differences are amazing... in a good way. The fact that there are less rules and restrictions seems to make the students more well behaved. Go figure.

The bus itself for this trip was comical. I will certainly say it's the nicest bus I've been on for any kind of school trip by far; it was a coach, and even in America I'm used to non-air conditioned buses. But this bus didn't have enough seats for the students, so there were ten or so of them just lounging in the aisles and leaning against the door next to the driver. No big deal.

Furthermore, this particular bus did not have any working gauges. BUT, it did have a 2x1500 watt amped stereo system that the students and bus driver used to have a mini-rave en route from the school to the zoo. Who needs to know how fast you're going when you can have a party on board?

But enough about the amusing journey. Safari World in Bangkok is quite a neat place to visit, albeit steaming hot as is all of Bangkok. You enter the park by going through a mini-safari (as the name would suggest), and get to see the works: lions, tigers, ostriches, giraffes... it's Africa in Thailand.

The park itself, once you're through the safari, has plenty of exhibits and shows to offer. I won't say it's the coolest place I've ever been, but for a field trip, it certainly was worth the time there. We saw several shows, including sea lions (my favorite), dolphins, an orangutan rock and boxing show, an American Western show, and a quite impressive James Bond show. So really, it's a theme park with a zoo on the side.

The students, although quite hot, seemed to enjoy themselves, but I'd argue that I had a better time than they did. The older I get, the younger I am, right?
All in all, I'm hoping to be invited on another Thai school field trip. The students are well behaved, and it was quite a lot of fun! Who would have thought you could get a job that pays you to have a good time at the zoo?


No comments yet

Post your comment

Comments are moderated and will not appear instantly.

Featured Jobs

English Teachers for May Start

฿35,000+ / month


NES / Non-NES English Teachers

฿35,000+ / month


Part-time NES Teachers

฿600+ / hour

Pathum Thani

NES Science and English Teacher for Primary

฿35,000+ / month

Nakhon Si Thammarat

Kindergarten to High School Teaching Positions

฿105,000+ / month


Filipino Teachers

฿22,000+ / month


Featured Teachers

  • Ma

    Filipino, 29 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Krystel

    Filipino, 24 years old. Currently living in Philippines

  • Lebogang

    Batswana, 30 years old. Currently living in Botswana

  • Ceri

    British, 44 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Sanju

    Sri Lankan, 46 years old. Currently living in Thailand

  • Christine

    Filipino, 37 years old. Currently living in Philippines

The Hot Spot

Can you hear me OK?

Can you hear me OK?

In today's modern world, the on-line interview is becoming more and more popular. How do you prepare for it?

Renting an apartment?

Renting an apartment?

Before you go pounding the streets, check out our guide and know what to look out for.

The dreaded demo

The dreaded demo

Many schools ask for demo lessons before they hire. What should you the teacher be aware of?

Teacher mistakes

Teacher mistakes

What are the most common mistakes that teachers make when they are about to embark on a teaching career in Thailand? We've got them all covered.

Will I find work in Thailand?

Will I find work in Thailand?

It's one of the most common questions we get e-mailed to us. So find out exactly where you stand.

Contributions welcome

Contributions welcome

If you like visiting and reading the content, why not get involved yourself and keep us up to date?

Need Thailand insurance?

Need Thailand insurance?

Have a question about health or travel insurance in Thailand? Ricky Batten from Pacific Prime is Ajarn's resident expert.