It sounds as if these teachers went way too far. My children's school is doing a mock disaster evacuation drill this week, with a more benign scenario of a lightening strike hitting near by (We actually rarely get lightening in this corner of the world) and causing a fire. I think one year they did do some sort of school shooting drill that scared some kids. I remember all too well back in the 60's and 70's when I went to school, they had annual nuclear attack drills that were totally ridiculous and fueled a hysteria of sorts. Link to BBC article An excerpt from the article: Teachers at a US school have been criticised after staging a fake gun attack during a class trip, telling children it was not a drill. Many of the 69 pupils, aged about 11, were reduced to tears when they were told to hide under tables and keep quiet as a gunman was on the loose. Parents of the children, who attended Scales Elementary school in Tennessee, were said to be furious at the "stunt".