Now, that phrase comes easily to me. The way to redirect 9 first graders from 9 different places to look, at me. Today I found how easily I have slipped into “teacherspeak”. Yeah, thirty five years ago I was a teacher. Now, I am a volunteer leading field trips.
Today, 110 first graders came to visit us at the Howard County Conservancy. I think I can say it is successful when you hear things like we did, when a first grader runs excitedly up to his teacher and exclaims, “This is so cool!”. Maybe it was petting our corn snake. Or jumping in the puddles from the well water hand washing station. Or, just everything he got to do today.
First graders are studying rocks, fossils and extinct animals in their earth science curriculum. Today, they got to identify animals, touch fossils and use magnifying glasses to study rocks.
They also got to see foundations, walls, roadways, sidewalks and all the other ways rocks are part of our lives. Oh, and they found woolly bear caterpillars, fed the goats, and some of them got to see a baby eastern worm snake (no pics, I didn’t have the camera with me).
In other words, they had a blast outdoors on a perfect fall day.
By the way, we could use a few more volunteers. Today, two called in sick. We had to expand the number of students we each had assigned to us on the hikes. Spring training takes place in March. We are a bit short on numbers, since the Howard County schools are increasing their enrollment. 80-90 students we can handle easily. When you hit 110 or 120 like some of our schools, we need 8-9 volunteers each field trip.
If you want a really rewarding way to add interest to your life, if you work at home and are flexible, or are retired like many of us, this is a no brainer. A great way to spend crisp fall and warm spring days making a difference.