Friday, April 17, 2009

Historic Yates Mill County Park

Yesterday was field trip day.  I love field trip days.  The day was beautiful!  Sunny and a little cool - just perfect for being outside. 

We visited the site of an historic mill and had a short tour of the mill.  We watched the wheel turn and heard about the comunity that lived around and depended on this mill.

We then split into groups for classes.  The older kids (middle and high school) had an intro to geology class.  The reports that I heard from the kids and adults were that it was an interesting and fun class.  I was hopeful because the man who taught the class sounded excited about the subject when I talked with him on the phone.  (The topic though wasn't one that I found all that exciting.  I'm thankful that someone who did love the topic could share it with my children.)

The middle group of children (2nd to 5th graders) did a pond study.  They had a class time first to learn about the food web.  Then they went to the pond - to get wet, explore and learn.  They had a blast and found a lot of neat things.

I tried to get photos, but we left to walk around the pond before the kids did - and totally missed them while we went on a mile hike.  LOL

You can see some photos of this group on my friend Lynn's blog.

The younger children were free to do a number of things.  We could go on a hike, do a scavenger hunt through the museum, play with colonial dress-up clothes or read some books in the reading corner.  We did a little bit of it all. 

First we went on a hike.  I was hoping to find the pond study group, but we found some of our own finds.

Turkey tail fungus

A goose

A turtle

There were also snakes, but I didn't get a picture of one of those. 

Daniel enjoyed the hike and Eliana rode contentedly on my back.  We shared the walk with a friend which was nice too.

When we got back to the museum, we did the scavenger hunt.  They had a set of picture cards.  When you found the item that matched it, you turned it over and read the question on teh back.  You could then answer the question on a separate piece of paper.

When you finished the hunt, you were allowed to draw a wheat penny from a large barrel.  They chose these because of the wheat that was milled at that site.  We learned about the various types of wheat pennies.  I even got one made of steel that was made during the war.  Copper was needed for the war effort.  Its a lighter penny and obviously different in color. 

The kids enjoyed the hands-on nature of the museum.

Eliana had fun playing with puzzles, looking at the various animals on display, playing with a friend and just wandering freely about.

A photo of the kids and I.  This doesn't happen too often as one of us is usually behind the camera.

If you live nearby, this is a delightful site and I do recommend a visit.  I look forward to going back again one day to explore some more. 

We ended our day at a nearby park.  I didn't take many photos except for those I shared yesterday.  I did take one of a vending machine though that just made me giggle. 

Thanks for sharing our fun day!