Friday, March 28, 2014

Maple Sugaring

On Tuesday, Doug Brown and Autumn from Slopeside Syrup came into our classroom.  They explained about tapping trees, collecting sap, and boiling sap into maple syrup. We then went outside to tap three trees.  Kindergarten students drilled holes, hammered taps in and hung buckets and lids.  We will be collecting the sap to give to Ms. Kent. Her husband will be boiling the sap into syrup for our school at their home sugar house. 

Some of the children helped to turn an area into our classroom into a sugar house and a maple syrup/ maple candy factory.  It's fun to see the dramatic play. Farmers are collecting sap from the trees that they made and boiling it in the evap0rator. (The easel area has been turned into a maple grove; the water table is now an evaporator - with a fire in the fire box; the back table area is the factory.) There is a lot of excitement as the sap is running in the classroom. Let's hope that it warms up enough to empty our real sap buckets soon!


 



  








Doug stopped in to "buy" some maple candy from our factory. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Our Famer Pen Pals

Our class is corresponding with Ashley and Erin Farr of the Farr Family Farm in Richmond.   The Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) of Vermont arranged this pen pal opportunity for us. NOFA is also providing stipends for farmers to host educational field trips in the spring. We are making plans to visit the Farr Farm later in May.

Mr. and Mrs. Farr operate a dairy farm. We learned from our pen pals that the Farr farm milk their 60 cows with a robot. The children are very curious to learn how a robot milks a cow!  They are wondering what the robot might look like.  They are very curious to know if the robot looks like Boxy, the pretend robot in our library. They drew pictures of how they imagined the milking robot. We sent our pictures to Mr. and Mrs. Farr. We are anxiously awaiting the next letter and pictures from the Farr Family to see what their robot really looks like and how it works.