On Saturday, April 9, 2016, Boston ICO volunteers, Ben, Nicki, Lucy, Rachel, and I arrived at Drumlin Farm to meet 15 children (ages 8-10) from the EBNHC Let’s Get Movin’ after school program. The kids were all super energetic and excited about what the day had in store. I started the trip with an opening circle, similar to an icebreaker that famously begins each ICO trip. Smiles and laughter were had when each kid and adult introduce themselves and shared their favorite animal.
After the icebreaker, I instructed the kids to pair up with a buddy, then gave each pair a hand-drawn map of Drumlin Farm, which served as the itinerary for the first and second portion of the trip. With the map in hand, the kids were ready to conquer the farm and have a lot of fun – and that they did. The first adventure of the day consisted of seeing and learning about the different types of animals on the farm. Using their handy maps, the kids lead their friends and their leaders to their desired location on the map. Unanimously, the first stop was to see the adorable baby lambs, all of which had the softest mantel and most angelic face. After that the cuteness continued with baby pigs, cows and chickens. We all truly enjoyed and loved seeing and learning about all the wonderful farm animals.
Because the group we were with loves healthy eating, we made sure to provide lunch that consisted of deliciously healthy food options. Serving lunch to the kids became a group event. Ben, along with the bus driver, carried the food items from the car to the picnic area, where Nicki and Rachel helped Ben to make delicious PB&J sandwiches and turkey sandwiches. Fresh baby carrots with hummus, clementines, apples, oranges and water were offered with the sandwiches. The kids ate with such delight that they kept asking for seconds of the healthy foods.
Following our short lunch break, the second portion of the adventurous day began. As soon as the children where paired up with the map again, we started our leisurely stroll through the farm’s 1/3-mile hike to the Drumlin peak, which consisted of paths that led us through the "Forest Discovery" and the "Beeline” trails. When we reached the top of the Drumlin, Ben engaged the kids by leading them in an exciting and heart-pumping game of Capture the Flag. It was engaging to see them run back and forth from one end of the peak to the other. The kids had so much energy! They all looked to be having a lot of fun, especially chasing after Ben. Before leaving the farm, the kids wanted to have one last look at other parts of the farm, so we stopped at the green house to admire how greens and other vegetables are grown, then went into the barn to explore and pull the carriage that was housed inside.
As the Drumlin Farm trip culminated, Nicki ended with the traditional closing circle where everyone had a chance to share what they liked the most about the day, along with sharing their favorite animal they saw at the farm. The rousing game of Capture the Flag and seeing the piglets and the turtle on a log were very popular moments by all. The circle was concluded with a friendly huddle. With fist together, we laughing ended with “Turtle on a log!” And most importantly, just before heading to the parking lot one child declared, “From this day on, I will not eat any animals.”
A link to view the photos is here.