Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Way back when, in Texas

We took a trip into Fort Worth to Log Cabin Village with our friends Kerry and Holly. It was hot, but thankfully there were trees. Log Cabin Village is a great collection of restored cabins from various places in Texas from the mid 1800s. Volunteers are dressed in period costume and available at most cabins to give visitors more information about what they see and about the time period. Seeing that both Kerry and I were once teachers, we turned this into an educational experience for the girls. On the village's website, we were able to download and print an activity booklet as well as detailed information about each of the cabins.

The girls' favorite cabin was the interactive one where they could really touch and experience things- rope bed, corn husk doll, grinding corn. What fascinated them most was that whole families- usually at least 8 kids plus parents- would sleep in that one room (a few had a loft) and that the parents usually got the only bed. They were grossed out by the bath bucket and that the dad (the dirtiest from working in the field) would go first down to the youngest.

Jacob loved the water pump. He would work so hard to pump it, having to stand tiptoe, then hurry around to touch the water just as it was done flowing. He also liked collecting eggs from the chicken coop (pretend eggs and hens).

I found the schoolhouse the most interesting. The tour guide in there was very knowledgable. His mother in law had been a teacher in a one room school house when she was 14. She had an 8th grade education, where most kids only reached 6th grade, so she was able to teach the rest of the kids in the class. Then, as was the norm, she was no longer allowed to teach when she got married (at age 17). The guide also told us that a favorite lunch mothers would send with their kids was raw potatoes. The kids would get to school and stack the potatoes on the pot-belly stove. By lunch time, they all had warm potatoes!

After a picnic lunch, the girls finished their learning packets, and we returned to the village for their certificates of completion. I think those packets really helped the girls benefit from and enjoy the village instead of it just being some boring old place to go. Beth couldn't really understand the time period difference, but she still learned to appreciate what modern convienences we have now. I look forward to going again!


yaya said...

Fun stuff. What a great way to learn. Speaking of time period difference, Kevin at lunch on Sunday, was a bit surprised about our root beer in a bottle and "Penny Arcades" time period.

Katherine said...

I'm glad to hear it was fun (and that there is actual "stuff" to do). I've wanted to go there for a long time & we have just never made it!

Casey (@ Ever-Changing Life) said...

Very cool!