MFC hosts farm trips in the fall and spring! We take two classes at a time to visit a nearby farm and participate in the planting or harvesting season on the farm. Students rotate through stations that allow for smaller groups to take a tour of the farm, help out with farm chores, and learn about the foods that are grown or animals that are raised there. MFC also provides one or several classroom lessons to go along with the farm trip, usually in the weeks beforehand.
What do students do on the farm?
Whatever the farmers need help with or are willing to share! We’ve had students harvest rhubarb, harvest ingredients to prepare a salad, spread straw, wash pumpkins, clean tools, paint a mural, feed cows, hold rabbits, watch a shearing, take a tree walk, taste herbs, mulch, and weed.
How long do the trips take?
Typically, we are on the farm for a total of 3 hours. This allows for introductions, a good amount of time in three or four stations, and lunch time. Depending on the distance, travel time will add to the total time away from school. However, the farm is always within an hour of the school.
What is the schedule for the day?
Here is a sample schedule from a past farm trip, accounting for a 45-minute drive. Students rotated between four stations, spending 20 minutes at each station.
9:15am – Depart school
10:00am – Arrive at farm
10:00 – 10:15am – Introduction to the farm and farmers
10:20 – 10:40am – Station one: hand weeding
10:45 – 11:05am – Station two: mulching
11:10 – 11:40pm – Lunch and free play
11:45 – 12:05pm – Station three: tree walk in the yard (ID species)
12:10 – 12:30pm – Station four: picking rhubarb / salad-making
12:35 – 12:50pm – Closing Q & A
1:00pm – Bus pickup
1:45 – Arrive back at school
What does MFC provide?
- MFC facilitates the educational experience. We plan the logistics with the school and the farmers, as well as lead the schedule for the day.
- The MFC educator will meet at the school, ride on the bus to the farm, introduce all parties, and keep time for rotating stations.
- We will print the daily schedule for all adults.
- We supply handwashing supplies for lunch time.
- We bring drinking water for everyone.
What must the school provide?
- Schools must request and pay for bus transportation.
- Students should come with a packed lunch.
- Students should come with clothes that can get dirty.
- Parent volunteers are helpful! There should be an adult to chaperone each group of kids, rotating through the stations.
What must the farm provide?
- Stations to keep a group of ~12 students engaged for 20 minutes (MFC educator will help with planning these).
- A place for the large group to have lunch.
- Available bathroom.
- A hose for handwashing station.
- Additional adult volunteers are helpful!
Do the farms get paid?
We provide a stipend for farms that agree to host a trip.
- $200 for a single class
- $300 for two classes
- $350 for over 60 students