Thursday, June 9, 2011

Field Trip

Today we took a field trip with a group of kids from Vacation Bible School from our church.  The field trip was to Prairie Heritage Center near Peterson, IA.  They have a lot of great things for the kids to look at and learn from.  In the basement of the Prairie Heritage Center, they had a very large snake set up!  The whole room was filled with nothing but pictures and information about snakes.  The kids absolutely loved every part of it!  On the main level, they had an exhibit to show prairie animals and plants.

The kids also did a scavenger hunt in this area of the center.  There were all kinds of information about the heritage of the land the center sits on and of the local area.  The Prairie Heritage Center sits in the hills and has a beautiful view from the windows.  They have binoculars and a telescope available for visitors to help enjoy the view.

After the scavenger hunt, we went on a hike on the trails with the resident Naturalist.  She explained a lot about the native grasses and flowers of the area as well as some insects and spiders that call the area home.  They have native prairie grass growing there, and Charlene, the Naturalist, suggested we come back in the fall and see just how tall the grasses will be then.

There is a pond on the property also.  We approached the area quietly and found turtles sunning themselves on the logs.  There were several turtles swimming around the logs too.  The kids had a great time watching them.  Charlene also taught the kids about some of the native weeds.  They broke open milk weeds and learned about some early uses for the milk from those plants.

Overall, the group had a great time.  JM and I plan on going back soon since we had limited time today.  Also, the resident Buffalo are expecting calves soon, and we can't wait to see the new babies.