Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Flat Aggie's Virtual Dairy Farm Tour

Last week, we introduced you to our tiny houseguest, Flat Aggie. She came to visit our dairy farm, to tour, take notes and pictures and then take it all back to her 1st Grade classroom to share what she had learned with her classmates. We were all very excited to have her stay with us and hope that she will visit again sometime!

Dear Friends,
I am so excited to tell you about my visit to this California dairy farm! I had so much fun with the two boys who live there! They were very nice and showed me everything they like about their farm. Cole showed me this brand new baby calf! It was born about an hour before this picture was taken. It was so cute!
 Then he took me into the milking parlor, that's the barn where the cows go to give milk each day. The man working there was taking care of the cows and hooking them up to the milking machine.

Can you see the milk coming out from the black hose into the plastic cup? I got to get a peek up close! I also got to put my finger inside of the milking machine! Do you know what it felt like? It felt just like putting your finger inside the tube on a vacuum cleaner! It tickled! Haha!
Then the milk went through this hose on it's way to a big, giant milk refrigerator, so it could be kept cold.
Cole took me outside to show me his Very Favorite part about the farm - the tractors! We pretended to drive this one... then his dad, Farmer Chris, gave us a ride on the gator! It was So much fun! Weee! You always have to sit down and hold on, though. I learned that Safety is the first thing you Always have to remember on a farm!

On our gator ride, we went to see the cows who were already done giving milk. They were eating their breakfast. It looked like a giant salad and smelled really good. This cow gave me a kiss and licked my hair! Then we went out to the field to see the oats. They were taller than Cole! He said the choppers will come in a couple of weeks to chop the oats, kind of like a giant lawn mower. I think watching the choppers sounds like lots of fun.

After lunch, it was time to go and feed the baby calves. Check out their bottles! They are bigger than I am! Wow! 
The calves were so cute, Clayton let one suck on his fingers! I let one suck on my fingers, too! It tickled so much! Their tongue feels just like sand paper. I was sure to wash my hands as soon as we were done with that.

Then we fed the babies their bottles. Cole and Clayton are hard workers, they really like to help take care of the babies. The bigger calves did not drink from a bottle, they had buckets with milk, water and grain. They each had their own little house, so the other calves could not share their buckets and the farmer can make sure everyone stays strong and healthy.
We got to see what the big cows eat, too. The white stuff was so much fun to play in - Clayton showed me how to do jumps in it! It is called cotton seed - like your t-shirts are made out of cotton, these are the seeds that are left over after the cotton balls are taken to make your shirts. 

The orange stuff is rolled corn, just like corn on the cob, but dried and smashed flat. Farmer Chris let me put some cotton seed and rolled corn into little bags to bring back to class and show you!

We got to sit on the hay stack and watch the trucks and tractors doing their work. It was nice to take a break for a minute. Then we got down to help feed some hay to the bigger calves. The hay was a little bit itchy, I put some of it in a bag, too!

This morning, I got up really early to go to the dairy and see this truck. It is called a milk truck and it comes every morning to take the milk that the cows make. The paper thing that looks like a clock is a recorder, it watches the temperature of the milk and writes it down. The milk has to stay cold all the time.

The man in the milk truck hooked this hose up to the big, giant milk refrigerator in the milk barn and pumped all of the milk out onto his truck. He will take the milk to a factory to make butter!

Remember when we asked Farmer Chris how he makes ice cream on his farm? He does not make any of that yummy stuff here, the milk is taken to special factories to make ice cream, cheese, yogurt, butter and other dairy products.
I am also bringing some goodie bags back to class to share with you! I had so much fun on the dairy farm! Farmer Chris said that we should be sure to send him any more questions that he can help us answer!
I miss you and can't wait to get back to class!
Flat Aggie  

You can read about Flat Aggie's other ag-ventures at The House That Ag Built!


Sarah said...

Ellen - you are AWESOME!!! This post is perfect!! Thank you so much for taking her on such an amazing adventure! I can't wait to share it with my class in the morning!!!

Nicole said...

Wow, such an awesome adventure. I have flat aggie as well, I sure hope my adventure is just as good :)