Monkey and Buster had a class at the Smithsonian’s Udvar-Hazy museum this morning. Led by Mrs. Keller, not only did the children have a great time, we all learned lots of information, plus each child created a unique satellite. After the class, we went up in the tower to watch for planes landing and departing from Dulles Airport (no luck). Then, we went out in to the Museum to see the Space Shuttle and to look at the many different satellites they have on display.
Just as an aside, this is one of the things I love about homeschooling. The class only had 12 children or so in it. The museum was virtually empty, and we could talk and sing and dance (all of which the children did), and have no concerns about disturbing anyone else. There are so many amazing resources for us out there.
The kids sat right up front, and they were all so incredibly enthusiastic about the class. The instructor went over her time, and was feeling really anxious about it. All the moms reassured her we didn’t mind at all, she could keep on going, and she was happy to. She was saying how often kids get restless by the end, but “These kids are all so engaged.” It was a nice compliment.
In the above picture on the right, Zoe got to be one of the first volunteers for the class, demonstrating the difference between rotation and revolution. Here’s the difference, in case you don’t know: A planet rotates on its axis, and it revolves around the sun.
This shows one of the experiments Mrs. Keller had the kids do. The goal was to help them understand why it is useful for a satellite to be up so high. The kids had to try and tell what the pictures on the table were, and what number was up on the die in front of them. Simple, yet effective.
After class was over, we wandered in the museum. There are computers all over that allow you to pick a type of aircraft, and then it gives you a chance to pretend like you are sitting in the cockpit.
The picture on the right shows an exhibit the kids were very excited to discover: An R2-D2 painted mail box, which they were tickled by. I was excited by the I Dream of Jeannie phone box, but it meant nothing to the children.
Finally, we were also very excited to see one of the movies being shown at the IMAX theater:
Yup, that’s right–Super Good Guy, er… robot…um…transformer…Optimus Prime! The Buster was tickled.
Then, one last silly shot, and back home: