Although the weatherman called for rain, we had a perfect fall day for our first Farm Fusion class!
The students learned the rules of the farm which boil down basically to respect for animals, classmates, and teachers, respect for boundaries, and respect for property. Each year, I explain to the students the importance of creating a stress-free, positive atmosphere here in our Farm Fusion class. If we can keep that environment, we will be able to do some seriously cool things this year! I have no doubt that this will be another fantastic school year!
Today, we kicked off the class with a lesson in dairy. The kids will be studying all about dairy for the next four weeks, including its role in keeping the body healthy (food group/nutrition study), different animals that give us milk, products made with milk, and even how to milk a goat! After a farm tour where each student was introduced to all of the animals on the farm, we began our discussion on the food groups. We talked about serving sizes, and how we cannot live of off only chicken nuggets! The class also discussed the animals that give us milk. We will be focusing next week on cows, but this workshop will cover both cows and goats. Actually, I explained to the class that I have even used sheep’s milk soap! The younger students learned about mammals and how they all give milk to their babies…. but not all mammals store up a large supply in udders!
For art, the kids learned about mosaics. They talked about the history of mosaics and worked on a cow mosaic picture using construction paper. Most finished today, but some will finish up next week. We will continue to correlate art lessons with the agriculture lessons each week!
Our story today was Jack and the Beanstalk. Much to my surprise, many students had never heard the full story! Sometimes, as adults, we assume that children have heard the stories or songs that we grew up with… but that is not always the case! We talked about Old Bess, Jack and his mother’s old milking cow. In this version of the story, Old Bess was bought back from the old man at the end of the story. At home, the students will be working on their own version of Jack and the Beanstalk! They can change any part of the story to make it their own…. They can even write it from the perspective of Old Bess, who spent most of the story in the hands of the strange old man! There is no wrong or right with the creative writing assignments. I simply use these as a catalyst for creativity… and hopefully it can make writing fun!