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Invitation to Teachers: Preview a Kidding Season Field Trip

If I told you that baby goats can teach you scientific principles, you’d likely tell me that’s too good to be true. Spend time with baby animals AND learn key concepts straight out of Next Generation Science Standards? Come on…

But it’s true. And I know, because we do it every year.

Easily the most popular programs at Angelic Organics Learning Center are the kidding programs. Every spring, we invite the community to join us in caring for newborn goats and their mothers. For the farm, kidding season is a crucial time to have plenty of eyes looking out for signs of labor, and to have plenty of people demonstrating kindness towards newborns and helping them get used to humans. For participants, it’s a deeply memorable, meaningful experience.

Campers

We’re excited to add kidding programs as unique field trip opportunities to our list of options, already consisting of half day trips, full day trips, and campouts for all ages from preschool through college (like this one). If you’re a teacher in the Chicago, Rockford, Madison, or Milwaukee areas, we would love to show you how special this experience can be. We hope you’ll consider attending one of our family programs this year, including the 1-day Kidwatch program and the Just Kidding Family Weekend, or stop by our Lodge Open House in March so we can show you what we have to offer.

For example, in attendance at our Kids with Kids Day Camp last year was a camper whose family took her out of school for a week to participate because she learns so much at the farm. We also had a group of siblings who put together a booklet full of pictures and information about goats and kidding. Before camp started, we got phone calls to our office about which goats were pregnant and whether a family’s favorite goat had delivered her babies yet. With just a very light curriculum, these programs are already memorable and informative.

Baby Goat

We want to use this captivating experience to offer learning opportunities to schools. With the opening of Angelic Organics Lodge, we now have a way of offering immersive, overnight field trips during kidding season that weren’t on the table before. We’ve developed exclusive curriculum for elementary and middle school field trips to take advantage of this unique display of behavioral science. Some of these opportunities include:

  • Goat Family Trees
    Students will draw family trees of our goats, and look for hereditary traits among our herd.

  • Goat Journals
    Journals can be focused on scientific observation of social interactions, herd behaviors, and instincts, or they can be a collection of essays or artwork. They are easily adaptable to Next Generation Science Standards or Common Core.

  • Farm Energy
    Track energy on the farm starting with the sun and moving through all of the life forms found on the farm. Students finish by making some energizing treats to feed the pregnant goats.

  • Kidding
    Groups might have a chance to see a live birth while at the farm! If a goat goes into labor, students can witness the birth and see the beginning stages of life. This is a unique chance to see behavioral science on display, and observe the life cycle in a way most people don’t get to see.

It’s about that time to schedule your overnight for the next school year, so I hope you’ll take advantage of these opportunities! Call the office anytime to talk about some options, or email programs@learngrowconnect.org to start a conversation.

See you at the farm soon!

Katie Townsend

Program Director, On-Farm Education