Well, first of all, obviously, my group – orange group 2 – was the best.
Our first activity was Food Miles. The man asked us some questions and when we answered a question we had to draw something on the whiteboard. We drew the steps from where the food came from to our homes.
We then went to a different room to look at different types of deer and deer meat. The man had lots of different deer antlers on a table and he said it takes less than a year for an antler to grow to its full height. We then looked at some venison and made some venison sausages.
After that, we went to a lady telling us about dairy products. Some of us got to shake a tub of cream which then turned into butter. We also talked about the different types of milk you can get. She showed us what you would use when milking a cow.
We then went into a different building and looked at different cereals: wheat, oats and barley. We sorted the different foods into sections of what we thought the foods were made of. We then went next door and looked at an old wheat grinding machine. We each had a go at using it and it really hurt your hands. After that it was lunch.
After lunch we went into a small building and learned about the different types of meat. We played a game with a small wheel. The lady spun the wheel and it landed on a topic or a type of meat (for example Scotch beef) and she asked us a question about it, and if we got it right, she gave us a hat. We all got a hat in the end though. Conni and I were the last to get hats because we didn’t answer any questions.
We then went on a tractor ride round the Crichton site. We stopped off to watch their new milking robot, the M2erlin. We watched two cows get milked. They had their udders cleaned, then they were milked then they were sent out and another cow was sent in to see if it needed milked or not.
We then went back into the main building and got our stuff, then got our buses back to school.
I really enjoyed the farm trip. It was interesting and I learned a lot at all of the different stations we went to.
Farm Q and A
Q. Who are you and where are you from?
A. I am Aidan and I’m from Annan Academy but I live in Gretna.
Q. What was your favourite part and why?
A. My favourite bit was the station of Scottish beef, lamb and chicken because it was informative and we got free hats that said ‘Scotch Beef’.
Q. Was there a part you did not enjoy?
A. Yes, the Artificial Insemination because we didn’t learn much because we didn’t have time.
Q. Could you describe the area around the Crichton farm?
A. Lots of it is taken up by the college and offices. The new Mental Health building has been built behind the farm with crops and grazing fields around it.
Q. Did you learn much about the Automated Milking Machine?
A. Yes, it was the M2erlin or M2. The way it works is: first the cow walks in and the machine senses whether the cow needs milking and if it doesn’t it gets let out but if it does it starts by cleaning the teat. Then it tries to locate the teats with lasers and attaches the milking thing. Then finally it sprays iodine on the teat, washes itself and goes again.
Farm Trip Q and A Interview
Reporter: Hello I’m Brian Nelson, your local news reporter, here to report your local news! Last Friday, the 6th November, S1 pupils from Annan Academy went on an educational trip to the local Crichton Farm, in Dumfries. I managed to ask some of the pupils about their experiences.
Q: Ella, what was your favourite part of the day?
A: My favourite activity was the tractor tour. I especially enjoyed it when we stopped to see the robotic milker. It was very interesting and a wonderful experience.
Q: I’m now with one of the teachers, Mr O’Halloran. How do you think the day went?
A. Today has been wonderful. Trips like these are a great way to learn. The children have thoroughly enjoyed it – and so have I! Though I am a bit upset as I did not receive a Scotch Beef hat.
Reporter: And there we have it! Now, leading away from this wonderful story, full of happy pupils and teachers out for a lovely, educational trip, here’s Gary Nimbus with the rather depressing weather report. I’m Brian Nelson, your local news reporter, with your local news! Over to you, Gary.
I enjoyed going to the farm and going on all the different tasks and activities.
The first activity was the boxes where you put your hand in and try to work out what is in the box. That activity was fun and I managed to get them all right.
The next activity was about milking and dairy products. We learned a lot about how to make ice cream and why milk cartons are different colours.
Next we went into a separate building to learn about cereals and what you can make from them. I thoroughly enjoyed this activity especially grinding down the wheat to make flour.
One of my favourite activities was the tractor ride where we got to go on a tractor trailer to see an automatic cow milker. It was very interesting watching the machine milk the cows by itself.
We also did a wheel of fortune where we answered questions about meats and if you got a question right you won a hat!
Overall, it was a very good day and I enjoyed myself and I would do it again if I had the chance. I had lots of fun and it was very interesting.