15 Nov Oregon Trail Field Trip
by Alena P., 6th Grade
This year one of the things that the sixth grade class is learning about is Westward Expansion in America, specifically the Oregon Trail. To start our study on this topic, both sixth grade classes went to Oregon City to visit the End of the Oregon Trail Museum. Before we went on the “trail”, we went inside the museum and visited a room which had an olden day general story, school, and wagon. We had to figure out, from a list of 30 things, what we would take in the wagon and what we wouldn’t, taking into consideration the weight limit of only 2,000 pounds for a six month journey. We were able to fill up the wagon and try to put ourselves in the shoes of the people in the 1820s. On the “trail” outside, we learned that the pioneers used dried up waste from buffalo as fire starters, and since the kids on the journey did not bring many toys, they would use this to play “frisbee” with their friends! Later, we also learned to speak a few words of the Native American language Chinook and tasted butter, which we churned, on crackers. We also wrote our names on a sample of Independence Rock, and then we gathered in the theater to watch a short movie, where we learned more about the pioneers and their lifestyle and the hardship these settlers often went through. Overall, this field trip had educational benefit in our study of Westward Expansion as it gives us a good foundation for the different books and topics we will be studying, and it was also very fun to learn about an important part of our country’s history.