Thank you so much for showing an interest in our farm. On our farm we hope to educate and inspire not only the students and children, but also the adults who visit.
We consider our farm not only Agri-tourism but even more importantly Ag-education. Each year we plan out a curriculum for our maze, so that the visitors not only have a great time finding their way through our maze (or getting lost in it!!) but they also learn some facts about the different crops or farm animals we have on our farm.
After visitors enter our maze, carrying a numbered index card which is provided by us, the first thing that they will be searching for are information signs which are hidden along the paths. Once they have found and read each sign (usually there are about 4-6 info signs) they will now be entering the "mazy" part of the maze and will be looking for hidden pumpkin signs which are numbered 1-12. Some of the pumpkin signs simply have a paper punch attached to the sign and each person will punch the corresponding # on their card. So if they found pumpkin sign #1 then they will use the paper punch to put a hole in their card on #1. Now some of the pumpkin signs also have a question (based on the info they read coming into the maze) and below the question are two answers, one wrong and one right. The person must pick which answer they think is correct and use the paper punch which is hanging under that answer (there are different shaped punches for each answer--boy are we tricky.) They continue through the maze attempting to find their way and also find all of the signs and answer questions when needed. If they find all of the signs and answer all of the questions correctly, then they will get to put their card into our giant pumpkin giveaway barrel and maybe they will be one of the lucky winners of a giant pumpkin!
Our past maze curriculums have been about corn, pumpkins, farm animals. honey bees, and farming in Illinois. This year, our visitors will be learning about soybeans.
If the group coming to the maze is Early Childhood, Preschool or Kindergarten, we block off part of the maze and have signs for each group to find (accompanied by an adult of course.) We will talk with your group about how corn grows and teach them about the crop they are walking through. When they are in the maze, there will be simple age appropriate questions on the checkpoints for the groups to answer.
During our hayrides we talk about the different crops we grow and explain different aspects of farming. Some of the different subjects that might be covered on the hayride are: gourds, corn, pumpkins, pollination- honey bees vs. wind pollination, crop rotation, hay vs. straw, and a question/answer period. Each discussion will be grade level or age appropriate.
During your visit to our farm animals, you and your children will learn about chickens, the different breeds, their uses, how to tell roosters from hens and if you would like to, you can pet the chickens and feel the different textures of the different breeds. You can also feed and pet our goats; meet our Miniature Donkey's, Jenny, and her daughter's Misty and Zia, greet our sheep, Mocha, Chandi and Sweet Pea; meet Lola the llama and Beauty, the miniature horse!
We have a picnic area where you can enjoy a sack lunch (please feel free to bring your own) and pumpkins are available mid September. Remember to bring your cameras, as there are plenty of fall decorations and photo op sites.
Weekday mornings are available for school field trips. If you are interested in booking a school field trip, a home school trip, a birthday party, a youth group or any other group outing please email to reserve your time.
Our farm is appropriate for all ages. We attempt to only have one school group on the farm at a time, so that you have our undivided attention. Besides Early Childhood, Kindergarten, Elementary, Jr. High and High School groups we also welcome Special Education children and adults. We do have a wheel chair accessible hayride, but please call ahead.
Enjoy and I hope to hear from you!