Promenade Elementary School first-grader Jade chugged down her ice-cold chocolate milk while ruminating on her experiences visiting the L.A. County Fair.
“Well, we got to see them milking the cows. That was neat,” Jade pronounced, while savoring that last droplets from her carton.
“When it was over, we got to have chocolate milk,” she smiled, excitingly thrusting the empty carton into the air.
Witnessing the milking of cows was considered one of the more fascinating events of the day for thousands of school children from throughout Southern California, including Corona’s Promenade School. Children, and teachers and chaperones, are invited each year to visit the Fair free of charge – all part of the FairKids Discovery Club program.
As of Sept. 15, the first three days of the program saw more than 21,000 students enter the gates to pet farm animals, play in the snow, leap into literature and make adobe bricks. The Fair expects to see a total of 100,000 children from preschool through eighth grade visit as part of FairKids.
And they definitely won’t be disappointed.
“The cows are so big!” said Promenade student Michael.
Teacher Sue Bain said the timing of the field trip was perfect for her class as they are studying a lesson on animals. “They’ve had a great time and for half the kids in our school, this is the first time they are seeing a cow or a goat or a horse up close. They were so excited, some of the kids squealed!”
Fifth grade teacher Laurie Morton of Longley Way Elementary School in Arcadia took her group of children to the Nutrition Barn & Food Science Classroom in FairView Farms where they conducted a scientific experiment using food coloring and coffee filters. A professor from Cal Poly Pomona conducting the experiments offered to send Morton some posters and other materials to conduct experiments in her own classroom.
“I am also going to have my class write about their experience at the Fair as a composition exercise,” she added.
In America’s Kids/Education Expo, students will jump into reading with the exhibit’s Leap Into Literature theme. A love of reading will be forever fostered when students step into the world of the enduring novels we all enjoyed as children. FairView Farms is an awesome “agventure.” How are clothes made? How does food get from the farm to our tables? Students find out how agriculture plays an integral role in their daily lives, and visit the very popular The Big Red Barn®. California’s Heritage Square has its own Little Red School House. Students will learn even more about California history in a hands-on, interactive environment where they’ll be taught to pan for gold, bake bread and make pottery. This is a one-stop history lesson. A lesson in geography, history and life science is waiting at the Flower & Garden Pavilion’s exhibit, “Road to Morocco,” where kids can explore the captivating culture and renowned biodiversity of this enchanting and faraway kingdom.
It doesn’t look like a classroom, it doesn’t feel like a classroom and it certainly doesn’t smell like a classroom! But, the L.A. County Fair is filled with exciting learning adventures like no classroom could be.
For more information on the Fair, visit the Web site at www.lacountyfair.com.