We are currently doing a Solar System unit in school right now. The museum had a tiny, but very cool planetarium. The highlight of the planetarium was this globe hanging from the ceiling. The children could operate the controls and turn the globe into any of the planets, the sun, or our moon. They could see it rotate and even control how fast it rotated. On the view of Earth, they could watch storm systems and change it to show the heat of the planet's surface in different locations. On the screen, they could watch all the planets orbit the sun. This was amazing because they could SEE how much faster Mercurey orbited the Sun as opposed to Uranus and the other farther out planets. They could also watch how the Earth orbits around the Sun, but at the same time, our Moon orbits around us, and at what speeds. It was really fun to hear the kids list off the planets from memory, and hear Logan spout off facts he'd retained.
"Mom! There's Jupiter's spot where the big storm is!"
Our next unit will be on butterflies and the kids can't wait because my friend sent them one of those habitats to house the caterpillars and butterflies in, before releasing them. Well, the museum had a HUGE butterfly exhibit to walk through. It was so much fun! Outside the exhibit, they showed us caterpillars making their chrysalis. When we went inside, one was just getting ready to form its chrysalis and by the time we came out of the exhibit, the chrysalis was fully done. I had NO idea they did that so fast. The kids and I are looking forward to doing our butterfly unit and releasing our own butterflies.
My butterfly loving girl even had a new Grammy made butterfly dress to wear for the trip. She was so excited! We were told not to touch the butterfly's wings, but Felicity SO wanted to hold a butterfly. She ever so carefully would put her finger next to the butterfly's feet as they sat on flowers. Most of the time they flew off, but she was determined. Finally this buckeye crawled on her hand and sat for a while. She was so excited! We were given an identification chart and after I showed the kids how to use it, they excitedly did so themselves. It was so fun to watch even Kian get just inches away from a butterfly, really getting a chance to study it, and then identify it on his chart.
Kian watching a butterfly that sat with Aunt Rachael for a bit.
The butterflies and planetarium were hits, but the kids also LOVED all the taxidermied animals on display. There were large halls of mamels and birds which we didn't get as much time in as we'd like. We hope to take another trip after our butterfly unit, to see the butterflies again, and to take Daddy with us.
They also got a private tour of a hands on bug display by the sweetest lady who took the time to let the kids handle bugs, and teach them LOTS of interesting facts about them.
And to top off our wonderful day, this sweet girl started thinking pretty deep on our 2 hour drive South. She started asking questions about heaven and salvation and eventually decided she REALLY wanted to ask Jesus to come live in her heart. So in the mountains above Santa Barbara, I pulled over, and she and I prayed together.
God is good!
All the time!