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Sixth graders at work and play at MCS Farm
By Karen Zaidberg
Sixth Grade Head Teacher
The students have embraced the challenge to maximize their brief time here at the MCS Farm. There were hikes up to the lean-to and Thyme Hill, soccer games on the field, and groups huddled around the tree swing laughing and taking turns to see how high they can get. The animals are being visited and pet steadily: Dobby, the sweet kitten whom many students have already fallen for, and the new calves, Speedie and Milkshake. Right now, the calves are quite shy so it will be exciting to see how they’ll be different when we return in January.
I introduced them to work hour, which is our structured curricular time. This trip we are tackling Salvadori’s Column Quest, which investigates the relationship between strength (load capacity) and structure (tall vs. short, different shaped bases) of a variety of prisms. The students worked in groups to make hypotheses and they experimented and then reflected on their findings. Following work time, we played outdoor and indoor games, and once students were in bed and had a chance to enjoy letters from home, I read aloud from The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo until lights out.
The next day was busy with classes: John took a group up to the woods, Donna and her team made a delicious lunch and snack for us, Ed and Cathy had a group harvesting beans and potatoes in the garden, and Lynn had students continue to work with yarn in preparation for their weaving projects.
As always, meals at the farm are a highlight. We have been treated to pancakes and sausage, yummy tacos, and sweet treats like gingerbread and homemade ice cream sandwiches. It’s lovely to watch students linger at the table long after plates have been emptied, involved in a good talk or savoring just one more bite. I have plenty of pictures of our time here, which I will post to Haiku, our learning management system, in time for Curriculum Night on Thursday. I am grateful to be at the MCS Farm with the students, to watch them be fearless and build relationships and take risks and get dirty. They are a wonderful group of young people, and I am excited to see how they blossom this year!
Article: About the MCS Farm curriculum
Gallery: MCS Farm images