Norristown Farm Park

On Earth Day, I googled Earth Day activities and found an “Earthworms for Earth Day” class that was taking place that afternoon at Norristown Farm Park.  I had never been to the park, but called to register my four year old and we headed out.

The class was very well done.  It was held outside by the pavilions.  It began with a story about Earthworms.  The children were then invited to dig for worms and keep them in a container to take home for release.

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Next, several kinds of soil were provided at the table.  The kids were encouraged to observe the differences and use the soil to paint.

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After painting, we were given a list of items to find.  We set out on a scavenger hunt to collect items that, when mixed together, would create soil.

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While looking for the items, we were able to check out a pretty creek and what looked like some fun hiking trails.

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When the children returned with their rotting wood, mushrooms, brown grass and other items, they combined their findings in a large bowl.  They used a tool to mix and crush the ingredients until it started to look more and more like soil.  We learned that it takes 100 years for soil to form naturally.

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I would love to go back for another visit and do some hiking with the whole family.  The buildings at the park were used historically as mills, a tannery, farms and the Norristown State hospital.  Today, the park boasts over seven miles of paved trails and a few more adventurous ones.  Visitors will find places to hike, bike, fish and picnic.  All this, coupled with the quality children’s program we experienced, definitely puts this park on our list of great places to learn and explore.  Now if every trip to the park ended with all three kids looking like this…

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…I’d probably drive the 45 minutes there every day!

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