History Colorado to Start the New Year Off Right for Edison!
Edison Elementary students started 2018 off on the right foot by going on a SOLE field trip to History Colorado, a great place to visit in the winter months!
The miners of Sunnyside Mine learned about what life was like working underground in search of silver. It was astonishing to think of how the miners had to pack and eat their lunches carefully, to keep things warm and cool and protected from dirt and collisions. Everyone searched for friendly rats that kept everyone in the mines safe. Safe how? Well, those rats were the key to sensing rumblings in the mine that they would run from as well as indicators of whether or not the air was safe to breathe. Many groups attempted to complete a successful explosion using dynamite, but many cause uncontrolled chaos instead! Can you imagine how scary it would be to perform these dangerous tasks deep underground in actuality?
One area that was particularly popular was all about the Dust Bowl. Many short-term natural disasters are occurring around us all the time, but the Dust Bowl lasted for ten years. What is truly difficult to think about is how long they had to endure the storms and the conditions they faced. Students got a taste of what it would be like by entering a simulation house that reenacts a ‘roller’ storm complete with sound and light effects. Then it was time to see what your own fate might have been by taking a spin or roll to see your own outcome. Many families gave up on farming due to the extreme difficulties caused by the Dust Bowl, but the lucky few who persevered through hard work, community coming together, and luck, managed to survive and even thrive in the end. Do you remember what your outcome was?
The prairie town of Keota in Northeast Colorado has a wonderful replica built inside the main floor of History Colorado, and students had a chance to live the lives of different people from the town, completing chores, going to school, and being part of the community. Students were thrilled to visit the general store, ‘drive’ the old car down a video road, collect chicken eggs, and experience what life might have been like in Colorado’s earlier years.
When it came to visiting Mesa Verde, students enjoyed having the opportunity to explore hands-on activities on their own. The water use station was intriguing as well as eye-opening to many. How could people live on such a small amount of water each day? Also interesting was examining the model of the Mesa Verde buildings, and some students experimented with making twine and painting as well. Life was certainly much different then than it is now. It was fascinating to look back at what people were able to make and do hundreds of years ago. How are our lives similar and different than theirs?
At the end of the day, everyone had a successful and educational trip back in time. It was sad to have to leave, but the experiences will last! The 4th grade classes of Edison will have a lot to talk about from the experiences they had at History Colorado and how each fits into the big picture of our shared history.
The SOLE program would like to thank everyone who made this trip happen, including the staff and volunteers from History Colorado, the staff, bus drivers, and parents from Edison Elementary, and of course the students.