Field Trip Friday – One-Room Schoolhouse

This last weekend, the girls and I took a short drive north of us and spent some time back in time. We went to The Pine County Rural School Museum. A One-Room Schoolhouse that has been restored and opened to the public.

The Pine County Rural Schoolhouse is one of the few operating schoolhouses left in Minnesota. It was built in 1908 for a cost of $800. It was located on the east side of Pine City and Cross Lake. This schoolhouse was Dist. No 69, The Pine Tree School. This schoolhouse was part of the Pine County School District, which, at its peak had 125 districts.

One-Room Schoolhouses started being used for new things after the mandatory dissolution act of 1967 that decreed any district that did not offer instruction through grade 12 had until July 1, 1970 to consolidate with a high school district.

Throughout Minnesota, some of the schoolhouses have become town halls, community centers, remodeled into homes, preserved as museums, or wrecked for their lumber. This was not the fate of this one-room schoolhouse, and we are thankful for that!

After closing their doors, this schoolhouse was moved into the city of Pine City and restored to be used as an operating one-room schoolhouse museum. However, that cost to move and restore the schoolhouse was a little more than what it cost to build it, $3,000!

Dist. No 69 is a one-room schoolhouse that is still operating. Yes, still operating! How? Well, during the summer, they offer one-week sessions for those who are interested. All 8 grades are offered and the children who attend will study reading, writing, and ‘rithmetic from textbooks that date back to the 1890s!

They have guest speakers that come in depending on the unit they are studying that summer, including a Voyageur from the nearby Northwest Fur Post! Everything from the “Pledge of Allegiance” to start the day to Pum-Pum-Pullaway during recess and lunch from a tin pail will make you feel as though you are right there in the schoolhouse when it was the only school.

While we did not go during this week, the girls still got a first-hand experience of how the school would have been like. We were able to write on slates with chalk, check out the library (my favorite room!), and listen to someone play the Star-Spangled Banner on a pump organ! The girls were even given the change to try to make that work!

We had so much fun stepping back in time and look forward to signing up for the summer sessions next year! We plan on going again this weekend with Dad and Ray Ray joining us!

Have you been to a One-Room Schoolhouse? What was your favorite part?

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Wordless Wednesday ~ MN Landscape Arboretum

Wordless Wednesday July 2015

We recently went on a field trip with Gaga BB (my mom) to the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. This place is crazy cool! Not only do you get to enjoy all the flowers they are making and growing, but they have special events happening there as well. When we went they had the Nature Connects: Art With Lego Blocks there. This exhibit contained 26 super-sized Lego sculptures. The smallest sculpture contained over 9,000 Legos! For all 26 sculptures there were over 450,000 Legos used! Now that is a Lego collection!! Without further ado, here is our Wordless Wednesday!

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I am linking up at:

Wordless Wednesday at Life at Rossmont

Chestnut Grove Academy Field Trip Friday Blog Hop

Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

Field trips, the best part of the public school child’s year. Field trips, a normal part of the homeschool child’s week. Apologia Educational Ministries understands the need and love for field trips and has come out with the Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal.

Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal Review

The Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal is a wonderful addition to all field trips! This takes your normal learning experience to a whole new level! Apologia is always making wonderful products and this is no exception to their standards!

Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal Review

When you purchase the Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal, you are getting 64 pages of heavy cardstock pages with full color on the pages. There is no cutting costs when it comes to this product. All the pages are spiral bound and durable enough to withstand any field trip you throw at it!

Your field trip journal starts out with helping you to prepare for your best field trip ever! This guide goes from the week before, the night before, on the way and at the actual field trip. There are tips for not only the teacher, but the student as well.

But you can’t prepare for a field trip unless you know where you are going. Apologia has two pages full of ideas and list them out according to the subject matter they relate the most too. Don’t have a way to actually get out and about? That is just fine! Apologia offers a special extra with each of their books that you order from them. This time, the special code listed on page 6 will give you access to additional materials, including many virtual field trips that you can take without leaving home!

When you are a homeschooler, field trips are a wonderful way to bring learning alive! But as you learn, you need to keep track. Your child will have 6 pages to list their previous travels, within their state, country and within the world!

Once you move further into the journal, you will find “How to” pages before the sections you move into. These pages will help give you an overview of what your child will need to do, and what they will be able to learn from these pages. The writing is limited and easy to scan over.

Now that you know what to do, you are able to let your child fill in the pages. These pages are not just fill in the blank pages. Your child will be doing writing, drawing, mapping and time. This is just one section of the whole thing! Your child will also learn about seasons as they journal about their special spot.

The journal will have your child looking at their special spot in a whole new light. They will pay attention to new things like the temperature and rainfall during each season (science lessons anyone?). And once again, your child will work on mapping out their spot and learning about how to draw everything to size.

Finally, after you travel and go to the comfort of your special spot, your child is going to think about it as they see it. Here, your child is able to do as they please and document things “as they see it”. There is no right or wrong, just have fun and learn!

We took advantage of the Field Trip Journal on a wedding weekend away. When your family plans a location wedding and you homeschool, you find a field trip within your trip! We had fun in Northern Minnesota and brought our Journal to Gooseberry Falls.

I personally loved how this journal touched on many different subjects, while still being fun for my kids. I loved how beautiful the pages are laid out, and how colorful they are. We love our field trips, and now we can be more intentional about our learning while we are on them and when we get back.

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All of my kids were fighting over who got to use this journal. This is one of those everyone wants it because it is so “cool”. They loved the eye catching designs and colors. Moe Man loved how thick the pages were. “Hey, I won’t rip these out like a normal notebook when I am writing!” And this is a must in our books if they are going to be taken out and about with us.

Overall, we loved everything about our journal. There is not a thing, other than not having enough in the house, that we found wrong with our journal. Thank you to Apologia for another wonderful product!

What do you use during your field trips to make sure your children are learning while they are playing?

Exploring Creation Field Trip Journal Review

Crew Disclaimer

Learning Through the USA ~ Minnesota

Welcome to the lovely state of Minnesota! We want to share a little about our home state with you here at Hopkins Homeschool.

Learning through the USA ~ Minnesota

Photo Credit: Some rights reserved by J. Stephen Conn Flickr


Here in Minnesota, we are called The North Star State or The Land of 10,000 Lakes. But we have a slight problem with that one…we actually have more than 15,000 lakes here in our state! I am sure that is quite a few, but it is great for those of us who love to go fishing…like our principal loves to do!

While out on the lakes, we love to watch our state bird, the Common Loon, and try to catch the state animal, the walleye for supper.

Learning through the USA ~ Minnesota

We became the 32nd state on May 11, 1858. Our state capital is Saint Paul. Saint Paul is on one side of the mighty Mississippi River, and on the other side is Minneapolis. Here in Minnesota, we call these two large cities the Twin Cities.

Learning through the USA ~ Minnesota

The flag of Minnesota is royal blue in color and has our state seal in the center. The state seal shows a farmer and an Indian riding by on horseback. Above this picture is a banner that says L’Etoile du Nord (The Star of the North), our state motto. A wreath of Lady’s Slippers, the state flower, surrounds all this. And surrounding this is 19 stars, showing that Minnesota was the 19th state to join the Union after the original 13.

Learning through the USA ~ Minnesota

Minnesota is located in the Midwest. We are just below Canada and next to the Great Lake of Lake Superior. Wisconsin, Iowa, South and North Dakota all surround us as our neighboring states.

We have a little bit of everything here. I am sure you have heard of the Mighty Mississippi River. Well that great river starts right here in Minnesota. At Lake Itasca State Park in Northern Minnesota, we are able to actually walk across this great river. Also in northern Minnesota we have the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. This is one of the largest wild areas in the USA. Of our over 10,000 lakes, a minimum of 1,000 of those are located right here in the Boundary Waters. These lakes are almost all connected which makes this ideal for those who love the water!

Learning through the USA ~ Minnesota

 As you travel down the North Shore Scenic Drive, following the shores of Lake Superior, you can stop off and see the beautiful Split Rock Lighthouse. This lighthouse had guided ships along the rocky shores for over 60 before becoming a part of the state parks. Stopping here you can learn about Lake Superior’s history.

Learning through the USA ~ Minnesota

On your way down the shore, you need to stop by Duluth. This is the harbor city where the large ships come in from Lake Superior. Duluth has a beautiful lift bridge. The best part about this, is stopping to visit, walking the docks and watching a ship come in and go under the bridge. The guys on the ships are so friendly and happy to see people, they love to stand out and wave as they come in. All of us kids love it when we are able to go up there and listen to the horns of the ships and see just how large they really are!

Learning through the USA - Minnesota

Photo Credit: Some rights reserved by the naked fauxtographer Flickr

Once you make your way to the Twin Cities, you will be able to stop by and visit the State Capital building and see the gold horses on the roof. Or if you like the arts better, you can stop by the Walker Art Center and see the large Cherry on the Spoon.

Learning through the USA ~ Minnesota

You can’t visit Minnesota without trying some of our food. We haven’t had it, but our grandparents and great grandparents have talked about the Scandinavian lutefisk for a holiday treat. You can skip that and head over to Austin and try some canned meat, Spam. But our favorite food is our Minnesota Wild Rice Soup! There is nothing better on a cold winter day. Here is the recipe we have made.

Now, before I get lost in a Minnesota good-bye (we can say good-bye and still be visiting over an hour later!), I wanted to share my Study Minnesota Pinterest Board with you. You can find worksheets and links to more information here.

We are glad you stopped by our lovely state and hope you learned something new! We sure did! Now to leave you with our state song, Hail! Minnesota.

I am linking up over at and the Learning thru the 50 States link up. Want to visit other states? Head on over and check them out!

Have you ever been to Minnesota? What is your favorite place to visit?


“Virtual” Field Trip Friday ~ Thanksgiving in 1621 Review


We had a lot of fun this week in our learning about the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag tribe. We sailed over to the "New World" on the Mayflower and Moe Man loved reading the story to the littles. We were able to find this book at our library. The pictures in here are beautiful! This is going on our Christmas wish list!



We have read stories that are included in our Thanksgiving in 1621 unit study from Spirited~Autumn~Hope that include The Colony's Beginnings, Building the Colony, and Meeting Native Americans. We have been able to compare housing, clothes, food, and school between the Pilgrim children and the Wampanoag children. We tried our hands at boiled bread and making Pilgrim hats.


As fun as all those things were, we had the most fun on our "virtual" field trip to the Pilgrim village. We are a family that loves going "back in time", so being able to see this villiage on the computer was fun! Moe Man was a tad disappointed when we found the Pilgrim village on the map and seen how far away from us it was.


On our short, 18 minute, visit to the village we were able to visit the homes, gardens and fort. We got to "talk" with the guards at the fort (meeting house) and learn about their jobs and their weapons. We got to "meet" Stephen and Elizabeth Hopkins (yes, the kids loved them the most because we share a last name). From these Hopkins, we got to see the houses and compare them to our own. We visited with a lot of people and learned a lot in this short time.


"Talking" with the people helps us to make our history more "real". Who cares about dry textbooks when you can learn from those who were there! I get to surprise the kids later today when we head on over and take another "field trip" over to the Plimoth Plantation!




We are loving this fun study and learning a lot! You can still get this study over at Spirited~Autumn~Hope and get in on the fun!


Read More Here:

Part 1

Part 3





Chestnut Grove Academy Field Trip Friday Blog Hop