Slip and Slide
Dry Land Fun!
Today we finally got to go on our postponed field trip to Natural Bridge in Lexington. We had a beautiful day! The first part was a serene nature trail that took us through the great stone archway and alongside the Cedar Creek on the way to the Native American Village. We arrived at the Monacan Village a bit early, so the kids had fun performing some songs from their folktale studies in music and then sang Christmas songs!
Then a guide brought us through the Monacan Village. This Village consisted of work shelters, gardens and the ati, a hand-constructed house. We also visited various stations where other “Monacans” conducted presentations about daily life of the Native Americans.
I was surprised at how much the students remembered about the Monocans, as it was around Thanksgiving that we studied them.
Next we continues another ½ mile on the trail past the Monacan village and stopped at an old saltpeter mine used during the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 for collecting raw materials for gunpowder production. We also saw the Lost River, a mysterious underground channel of water that now spills into Cedar Creek, before arriving at the end of the trail where there is a small waterfall. On the way we saw three snakes lounging on the trail wall!
At the caverns we took a guided underground tour to explore the stalactites and stalagmites that grow from the Canyon room. The best part for some students was when they shut the lights off for a few seconds and we were in complete darkness! After the tour we "mined for gems" in a simulation of how gold mining was done at one time. Each student go to take home a bag of rocks and gems that they had mined.
Thanks to all the parents who helped chaperone and made this field trip safe and enjoyable!