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Saturday, March 29, 2014
Where is a cowboy when you need one? Our first 4-H Geology Field Trip (a fun way to teach kids natural laws)
We are still a bit too young for 4-H, but we are taking advantage of the learning experience anyway. My dad, Brian, and my Godfather, Alan, used to lead our local 4-H Geology club when I was a kid. Alan's kids are my age and haven't been in 4-H in forever like me (they live out of state too). But he still is volunteering running the field trips and identifying rocks and minerals and fossils for kids in 4-H.
Anyway, Knox is old enough to get the concept of rock collecting and putting an eye to the ground to search for fossils. So that's what we did all day. We explored the Kansas prairie looking for rocks, minerals and fossils.
Brenden became quite the master of the rock hammer today. I was able to look for fossils without interruption as he kept himself occupied.
There is a lot to be said for Geology and teaching kids truth. Rocks and the earth haven't changed much, yup, a rock doesn't get up and move. Sort of like the Grand Canyon, it's going to be there awhile. Anyway, it's good to get them out and show them what life used to live in the oceans that once covered Kansas, and what rocks and minerals have formed and deposited over time. These objective truths are great to show and teach to kids. And you can get my drift where I am going with this truth stuff..natural laws, God's laws...etc. And then there is also the scientific method they learn as well, which can be applied to just about anything in life. Okay anyway, here's some pictures.
back in a rock quarry, Marion, KS
found us a few calcite geodes
I found a huge 2 to 3 pound piece of quartz here (below) on the road near one of the cattle guards, Greenwood County, KS.
Brenden was a bit shorter than some of the prairie grass, but you really can't get lost out here as you explore and sweep the ground for specimens.
neat and pretty land features to see everywhere, Kansas really is beautiful
They were burning prairie a few miles away, the sky was overcast from smoke all day.
open range...ugh, where is a cowboy when you need one?!
MOOOOOve off the road please (sorry I can't help it)
We were in open range, and there were cows blocking the road....and you don't want them to startle because if they stampede and you're in the middle of it, well they may ram your vehicle or worse fall down that rocky embankment and break a leg or something.
last stop, I found three Trilobites! 13 miles east of, Cassoday, KS.
Oh yea, my mini can took a beating today. Worth every little last piece of crinoid stem and bryozoa- I heard my five year old say, "Every day should be like this, Geology Field Trip, day off, Geology Field Trip, day off, Geology Field Trip, day off.. This was more fun than a light bulb experiment!" And the best line, was he was going to miss our vacation for the next field trip, he was just going to stay home while we travel out of state ;)