We have held two fabulous and fun farm schools this month, based on the river which cradles the farm and provides such richness of life, leisure and learning.
Boats came first.
The kids imagined up, designed and then built mad floating constructions out of bamboo, bottles, tape, string and various other bits of flotsam and jetsam...
These were then tried out on the river amidst much laughter and splashing. The victorious cry of 'It Floats!' could be heard echoing off the surrounding hills. This was sometimes followed by 'uh oh' and then ' oh well', but regardless of proficiency every vessel was somehow a success!
Yesterday was the day to try our luck at fishing in the mighty Mangrove. The kids all learnt about setting up their fishing tackle, how to tie a fishermans knot and what kind of bait to use. After much squeamishness they were threading prawns and chicken guts into their hooks and ready for action!
Our little nephew joined us for the day and asserted his right to 'bare all'. Too cute!
They fished and they fished and they practiced their patience and then..wham! Lucky caught a very decent flathead! It was super exciting and action stations as Flex showed how to remove the hook and later to kill it as humanely as possible.
We thanked he fish for its life and the opportunity it had given us to study it. And study it we did. We dissected and examined its internal organs and had a great time figuring out what they were and what function they performed for the fish. Out of its stomach we extracted some small prawns (it's last meal) and were amazed at how long the nervous system stayed 'alive' even after the fish had been beheaded!
We then cooked the fish in herbs and lemon and Lucky proudly shared it round. A wonderful demonstration of the circle of life. We gave the scales and the fish guts back to the river.
We will see you all for more Farmschool adventures when we return!!