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Farm Tours with Mary Ann

School Tours cost $7.00 per child (includes HST). There is no charge for teachers or parent volunteers. Each school tour will be planned to align with specific science, social studies or health expectations for the particular grade as outlined in the Ontario Curriculum.

Skills and Techniques

  • communicate by listening and speaking
  • make sense of simple written materials
  • connect new experiences to what they know
  • sort and classify objects on the farm
  • measure and compare the length, weight, mass, capacity and temperature of objects
  • understand and care for the natural world
  • understand the characteristics and functions of common materials found on the farm
  • recognize and use common forms of technology found on the farm

Cirriculum choose from the following

Introduction to the Farm - Animals, Plants, Buildings and Tools

During this two-hour tour children will experience the farm through observation, demonstration, music and activity. They will meet sheep, pigs, cattle, chickens, goats and other farm animals,and have an opportunity to see, smell, and feel them. The names and characteristics of each type of farm animal will be discussed. Students will travel around the farm by tractor and wagon to view various plants, structures and technology on the farm. In the spring students may witness a sheep shearing demonstration or participate in planting activities. Fall tours focus on harvest and children will learn where common fruit, vegetables and cereals come from. December tours outline some of the many products that come from plants and animals found on Canadian farms. A strong focus is placed on the life cycle, production and benefit of Christmas trees. There is no wagon ride associated with the December tours. Instead the children explore the Christmas Tree farm via a guided walking tour. For this tour it is necessary for students to be transported by bus from the Christmas tree farm to the Learning Barn where the animals are housed. At all other times the entire tour is at one location. Activities to consolidate learning include the use of feely boxes, a trivia wheel,assorted games,and activities with toy farm machinery and a wooden milk cow. Farmers are people who work with the sun, rain and soil to produce plants and/or animals that in turn can be used to make food, fibre and other products.

Skills and Techniques

  • recognize basic needs of animals and plants
  • identify characteristics of animals and plants
  • identify familiar plants or animals by only seeing part of it
  • understand ways in which animals move
  • compare changes in humans as they grow with changes in other living things
  • identify the 4 food groups and the natural sources of items in these groups
  • recognize various materials and their source
  • recognize food as a source of energy for themselves and other living things
  • identify the function of farm structures
  • classify structures on the farm
  • identify buildings on the farm and their use
  • identify occupations of people in the farm community, their technology and tools

Cirriculum choose from the following

Plants and Animals on the Farm

Children in grade one will have the opportunity to touch, smell, hear and observe various types of farm animals. They will learn about their physical characterisitcs, and identify different body parts. The children will compare and contrast the different types of farm animals in the Learning Barn and compare changes in the animal as it grows with changes humans experience as they grow. The intent is for students to better understand how farm animals grow and move, how they adapt to their environment, and how they use their senses to meet their needs. Role play activities will reinforce the learning. Children will discover how the role of the farmer is to provide food, air, water and a safe environemnt for plants and animals, so they may grow and be healthy, and then be able to provide different food products, clothing and other essentials. On the wagon ride, students will identify various structures on the farm, learn how they are used and how they are built to provide a specific need. Through the tour of the crop land, children will be able to discover how the farmers'boss is Mother Nature. They will investigate how farmers provide food, water, air and a safe environemnt for plants. In the early spring we will observe tillage and planting techniques. Later in the spring the focus will turn to haying. Harvest will be the fall focus. Throughout all the seasons the importance of conserving our soil, protecting our water and caring for our animals 365 days a year will be stressed. Farming is a way of life, but it is also a business. Farmers are in business with the earth!

Good Health from the Farm

This Grade One program focusses on comparing the needs of people with the needs of the farm plants and animals. In order to grow and be healthy all living things need good food, fresh air, clean water and a safe healthy environment in which to live. As we interact with the animals in the Learning Barn and tour the farm on the wagon, we will identify simple life cycles of plants and animals, and different ways in which farmers are providing a healthy environment for plants and animals, thus ensuring safe and abundant food for people to buy in the store or at the market. Demonstrations of sheep shearing will be available in the spring. Songs and games will illustrate how all food starts on the farm.We will discuss the four food groups and identify where foods in these groups originate. Students will investigate various machines and structures used on farms today to make work easier, faster and ensure more abundant and healthy food. Out in the field children will investigate how farmers care for plants and soil to ensure healthy and abundant food for the future. Interactive activities may include grinding wheat into flour, making butter or cheese, or harvesting fruit and vegetables in season. December tours highlight gifts of the farm that come in the form of food, fibre and other products. At the Christmas tree farm, the focus will be on how evergreen trees provide more than the Christmas tree for decoration. Where's agriculture? Everywhere!

Farms and Your Community

The focus of this program will be more on the occupation of farmers, identifying the places where they work and the technologies, tools and vehicles that they use. Not all farmers work with livestock. Livestock do require different forms of food and shelter, so some farmers work indoors, while others work outdoors. On this tour, students will be introduced to the different parts of the farm on a map, using a legend. As they tour the farm on wagon, they will gain mapping skills as they discover different parts of the farm. In the Learning Barn with the animals, students will learn how farmers care for their animals so that they may grow and be healthy to provide the food and other products they do. Emphasis will be on tools that the farmer uses and how people in the community interact with each other and the physical environment to meet human needs.

Skills and Techniques

  • identify similarities and differences in animals
  • see how animals adapt to their environment
  • investigate how different farm animals grow
  • understand the life cycles of farm animals
  • investigate how humans produce food by raising livestock
  • investigate the visible effect of air and water on the farm
  • identify sources of drinking water on the farm
  • identify a balanced diet
  • describe the importance of food

Cirriculum choose from the following

Growth and Changes in Farm Animals

On this visit children will be asked to observe the changes that occur in farm animals as they grow. This tour is best suited to the spring or fall, when there is greater opportunity to see new-born animals. Initially, students will be asked to identify what all living things need to grow and be healthy. The children will be able to compare the adult animal with its young - looking in particular at poultry, cattle, sheep, pigs and goats. We will compare the patterns of growth in different animals with their own growth, and we will focus on the conditions needed to support healthy development in a farm animal. We will study size, body covering and teeth. The children will investigate different feeds that farm animals consume and compare ways in which different animals eat their food. Part of the learning will be to discover how farm animals respond and adapt to their environment and the role that the farmer plays in affecting the growth of the animals on the farm. On the wagon tour, time will be spent helping students to realize the importance of air, water and soil to the health and survival of all living things. An attempt will be made to help students understand how weather conditions affect the plants and in turn the animals, and in turn us. We will investigate the sources of drinking water on the farm, and explore the crops that are grown to feed livestock. Children will see tools and machinery used in caring and providing for various livestock. Sheep shearing demonstrations occur in the spring. Farmers care for animals 365 days a year!

Farmers - Stewards of Air, Water and Soil

The objective of this program is for students to understand how important air, water and soil are on earth. As we study the animals we will learn how much water they require and how air and water contribute to the health and survival of farm animals. In the fields we can see how the local weather conditions affect the growth of the plants. We will also discuss how farmers care for their soil through crop rotation and must protect their water from chemicals through cautious use of fertilizers and pesticides. Students will learn about organic and conventional farming techniques intended to protect our natural resources. We will identify various sources of drinking water and consider the responsibilities we all have to protect our clean water. Children will consolidate their wagon tour with interactive activities that highlight the precious amount of soil for available for growing crops. They will also use an environmental model to prove how the actions of all people can endanger our water source. Farmers are people who are in business with the earth. Caring for the soil, air and water is taking care of business!

Producing Food from Livestock

This program will start with a review of the four food groups and the sources of the food in those groups. As the children observe the animals, they will focus on how the animal is cared for from birth to when it leaves the farm. Safe food starts on the farm. They will learn what the animal is fed, how it is housed and how it is kept safe while on the farm. Farming methods and protocols protocols have changed to reflect modern scientific and technological advancement. We will discuss biosecurity and animal care. The wagon tour will focus on the buildings, machinery and crops used to produce livestock which leave the farm to provide food, fibre and other products. While the focus will be on food production, students will also learn about the many by-products that are produced from farm animals. At the end of the tour, students will gain insight into the host of food processors, distributors, supermarket managers, chefs and restaurateurs that affect the food after it leaves the farm. Children may have an opportunity to grind wheat into flour, make butter from cream, or produce cheese curds.

Skills and Techniques

  • investigate ways in which humans use plants
  • identify parts of the plant used to produce specific products for humans
  • investigate the farm setting for growing crops
  • describe ways in which plants and animals depend on each other
  • compare requirements of plants and animals
  • consider how farmers care for plants
  • describe the components within a sample of soil
  • describe the differences between sand, clay and humus
  • identify living things found in the soil
  • compare how different plant roots grow through the soil
  • outline the basic human and animal reproductive processes
  • identify and compare distinguishing features of urban and rural communities
  • explain how communities interact with each other and the environment to meet human needs
  • identify geographical and environmental factors that explain the location of various urban and rural communities
  • identify farm products imported and exported product

Cirriculum choose from the following

Wonder of Plants

On this tour, we will view the animals and learn about them, but greater emphasis will be placed upon the characteristics and requirements of plants and their patterns of growth. The emphasis will be on plants as the source of food and shelter for the animals. We will attempt to show on the wagon ride how plants and animals on the farm depend on each other. The children will investigate various farm plants, eg. cereal grains, legumes, fruit and vegetables. We will review the basic parts of the plant and its function and attempt to show the changes that particular plants undergo in a complete life cycle. We will investigate the parts of the plant used to produce specific products for humans. Students will discover the many uses of corn, soybeans, wheat, oats and barley. Depending the on the time of year when you visit, this will be done in part through pictures and diagrams and in part through observation and hands on inquiry. Activities may include germinating a soybean seed, or dissecting a wheat plant. The students may observe bulbs and seeds, and participate in actual planting or transplanting activities. We will study the farm machinery used for tillage,planting and harvesting. Emphasis will also be placed on how the growth of plants can be affected by changes in environmental conditions. Our intent will be to show how farmers are stewards of the land and water, and to help students realize that farmers are people who are in business with the earth.

The Real Dirt on Soil

This presentation will focus on the importance of soil. The children will be led to discover how soil is not just dirt but a rich source of life and nourishment for many organisms, including humans. We will examine the soil on the farm and discover through inquiry and role-play the composition of soil. Students will become aware of the different types of soil, and will be introduced to environmental procedures being used by farmers today to conserve and protect the soil. Activities will be provided to study how soil absorbs and holds water, and we will observe the effects of moving water on soil. Visitors will learn about tillage techniques and equipment, and soil testing procedures. We will demonstrate how livestock help the soil and how the soil in many areas is becoming endangered. Weather and soil conditions permitting, the students will have an opportuunity to work in the soil and plant or transplant a crop.

Urban vs Rural Communities

Our farm is situated adjacent to an urban development and offers a perfect teaching setting for helping children to compare urban and rural communities. The students will learn of the cultural background of the farm, how agriculture evolved from hunters and gatherers and how urban communities began in this area. Students will have an opportunity to compare space and services found in the rural and urban areas today and will have an opportunity to investigate the relationships between communities and the natural environment.

Skills and Techniques

  • identify factors that affect plants and animals in a habitat
  • investigate and construct a food chain
  • distinguish between natural features of the landscape and those that are the result of human alteration
  • identify ways in which soil erosion can be controlled or minimized
  • describe how humans are dependent on plants and animals

Coming soon!

This will contain information about farm tours for community groups, such as Scouts or Beavers.

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