Thursday, December 20, 2018

Field Trip - University Of Washington!

On Friday, December 7th I went with the middle schoolers for their second field trip of the year. I think middle schoolers get a bad rap...they are awesome. At least my group was awesome. There were some other kids that were most definitely not awesome though. 

This time the field trip was to the University of Washington Seismology Lab! Once I heard that's where they were going I was so in!! That's right up my alley! The other awesome thing was we got to ride in charter buses and not regular old school buses. They were SO nice!!! They dropped us off on the west side of the University District. They gave us chaperones, maps and a list of different places to check out on campus. We also had a specific time for us to head to the Lab for our tour. At first we started heading one way with another group, but then all the kids and I were in agreement in that we didn't want to be with any other groups. So we turned around and headed our own way. 

I only ended up with two of the kids I had from the Capitol Lake field trip...Kaylie & Owen. From right to left...Kaylie, Mary Jose, Angie, Hannah, Paul, Thiaus and of course Owen. Owen and Thiaus are the only 6th graders. I thought the other kids were 7th graders, but later found out they were 8th graders. All of these kids were amazing though!!! This was our first stop at the Architectural Building. We were supposed to visit all these places and I figured we'd make it like a picture scavenger hunt and the kids totally indulged me! :) 

This is the Gerberding Hall. It's named after one of the former Presidents of the University. 

There was this giant tree on the way to our next stop. We all agreed it should have been decked out for Christmas. 

This is at one of the entrances to Gerberding Hall. The ornate sculptures were beautiful. I imagine that the sculpture above is supposed to be a Free Mason. There were all these crests around the building as well. 

This is the Suzzallo Library. This was what the kids and I were most excited about seeing. According to our paper there is a reading room and it's very reminiscent of Harry Potter. I was all for finding that. We went in one of the entrances and asked a nice man at the front desk where it was. He gave us clear directions so we set out to find it. Prior to even coming in the library at all I had a talk with the kids about being super quiet. This is a college campus and we are visitors and did not want to interrupt anyone from their studies. 

Here is the grand staircase that led up to the second floor. 

This is the entrance to the Reading Room! 

Is this the coolest thing!!! I was totally geeking out! SO gorgeous! 

These kids rocked it. They were so respectful! We snapped a quick picture and then headed out. 

One our way out I saw this vending machine and thought I'd check it out. This is what college kids might need...pens, pencils, ear buds, chargers, headache meds, calculators, work books, batteries...etc. The kids were all wondering where the candy was! 

Our next stop was Drumheller Fountain. If you look straight ahead you can see the outline of Mount Rainier on the horizon. It was chilly the day we were there, but honestly we couldn't have asked for better weather. I was so grateful it wasn't pouring down rain! 

Kids indulging me again! On our paper it said that one of the teachers was here at the fountain with a friend once and the friend ended up getting bit by a squirrel!!!

I noticed a sun dial so I wandered over to it. For some reason I didn't think it would work during the shorter days of fall, but it was exactly right. It was 10:30am in the morning and it was right between the 10 and the 11. So crazy! The kids thought that was too cool! 

On our way to the next stop we ran into another group and Gradin came up to me since we were wearing the same hat. I told him we had to get a picture since we were twinsies! He's so precious! 

These columns are part of the Sylvan Grove Theater, but that's not where they first started. They were actually built in 1861 and were part of very first University building. 1908 the property where these were located was to be razed. The head of the History Department tried to have the building moved, but unfortunately the only thing that escape demolition were these columns. In 1911 they were moved to the Quad, but by 1920 the University was changing it's architecture from Greek to Gothic so the columns didn't fit with that. So the head of the architecture department at the time organized a student  design competition for the relocation of the columns. In 1921 the columns found there home here in Sylvan Grove. 

Our next stop was the Husky Union Building also know as the HUB. This really is the hub of campus. This is where the student can get a bite to eat, study and there are a bunch of other services provided to them here. We sat down and ate our lunch. Owen didn't want too...he was a bit nervous being around all these college students. For the most part though they all had their earbuds in and their faces glued to a laptop. Occasionally we'd have a few students look at us and smile. I'm sure they got a kick out of seeing these middle schoolers on campus. We did look around inside the Hub and talked with someone at the Welcome Center he told us that the basement has an arcade and video game area and a bowling alley!!! 

After lunch we set out for the Quad which is short for The Liberal Arts Quadrangle. 

On the paperwork that I had it talk about how they waited until winter when it snowed to see where the students walked and then they laid the pathways down. 

There was an older guy in the middle of the Quad that was ranting about something. He also had this cackle of a laugh. I could tell he was making the kids really nervous so I just told them to keep walking. Once we got past him Kaylie said..."That guy really freaked me out!" You can't have a trip to Seattle without running into some interesting characters. 

After walking through the Quad we continued on to find Denny Hall. This is the oldest building left on campus. It was built in 1864. It was named after Arthur Denny who was one of the founding pioneers of Seattle and he also donated the land for the campus location. It's a beautiful building! 

On our way to our next location we saw this interesting art sculpture We tried to find out what it was and when it was put there, but there wasn't any plaque. After this we saw the building named after Bill Gates. It's a super new building so I didn't even take a picture. 

By this point we started heading towards the Lab since our tour was coming up. We came across this fun picnic area that was surrounded by a fence and was almost like maze. 

We also found this really big statue of George Washington. The kids were all surprised that he never actually wanted to be President. History can be pretty cool when you dive into it. :) 

We ended up waiting outside the building where the Lab was for about 30 minutes or so until our tour. I had a great time chatting with kids during this time. 

Here is the PNSN...Pacific Northwest Seismology Network. I wish I remember this ladies name. She was a sophomore and she was great. So knowledgable. I'm sure you've seen the rolls of paper in the right of this picture. Those are what they always show on the news when an earthquake happens. Well guess what....they are fake!!! They used to use those, but now everything is all computerized so the screens on the left are actually where all the data is. She said they keep the old rolls up because that's always what the news wants to show. More fake news!!! :) 

After talking about the different types of earthquakes, how magnitude is measured and where they have all these meters to measure the earths movement she moved on to the part the kids LOVE. Underneath this desk is one of the measuring tools and it's super sensitive. She just bent her knees and it recorded the movement. 

She had all the kids do the same thing so they could see it show up on the screen. 

Then she had us all jump at the same time. The line going up was the force of us pushing off from the  floor and the line that goes down was when we all landed. Super interesting! 

Here's a closer look at the rolls of paper. We also found out that the paper is a special chemical paper. The lines from earthquakes aren't from ink it's actually burned onto the paper. Each one of those rolls is 3 days of data. After that someone had to manual change the sheet of paper. I can understand why they went to computers. They did have the rolls of paper with all the lines from the 2001 Nisqually earthquake and the roll from when Mt St Helens erupted. I thought I took a picture of it, but I didn't. 

Once she started to show the kids that they could make an earthquake on the screen they all got turns to try it out. 

This was definitely a highlight for the kids. 

After the tour we headed back towards the buses. The buses were a little late and there was a situation with those kids that's weren't so awesome. I honestly thought that one kid should have been left with one of the teachers and then this persons parents should have been called to come pick them up. The teacher did handle it the best she could and she separated a bunch of people, but I certainly hope this kid has lost their ability to go on future field trips. At least the next one for sure. It was really eye opening having a situation like that after having such amazing kids. It never even occurred to me that the kids could even act out and misbehave. Maybe I'm super optimistic or naive. I didn't even have any of the other teachers cell phone numbers in case something like that happened. 

Just like last time the kids all signed a card thanking me! 

My sweet boy said..."Thank you mom! I loved to be with you on the field trip!" 

Seriously guys if you have kids in school get involved!!! Get to know the kids! I used to think they wouldn't want me around and that's simply not true. 

Kaylie even made me a separate card. 

She wants me to be her chaperone more often. How sweet is this!!! 

You bet if there's another opportunity this year I will for sure be there!