Julian students visit Eagles Nest vineyards

More than 60 third-grade students from Julian Elementary School took a field trip to Ramona recently to visit the vineyards at Eagles Nest Winery and to learn scientific and mathematical concepts relating to grape farming.

Nancy Younce, a second/third-grade teacher at Julian Elementary, asked her friends Julie and Dennis Grimes, owners of Eagles Nest, to host the event to provide students insight into math and science concepts that tie into farming. Ms.  Tangeman and Mrs. Cirillo’s third-graders were also included in what the youngsters agreed was an exciting event.

Several teaching stations were set up to illustrate math and science  aspects of grape growing. Dennis Grimes explained photosynthesis (how plants process sunlight and carbon dioxide into sugars and oxygen), the different varieties of grape vines, and the fruit ripening process, and students received a hands-on class using a refractometer to measure the  sugar level in grapes.

Other exercises featured statistical measurements, planting of grape vines, and for fun, some painting and coloring exercises. Over 20 parent escorts and teaching assistants assisted with the classes and kept each group of students rotating among teaching stations.

Since the event was for minors, grape farming and vineyards were featured — but inevitable questions about wine and wine making from the parents were entertained when the students were focusing on their classes.

The enthusiastic crowd departed with smiles and a chorus of “Thank you, Eagles Nest” after enjoying a lunch of wood-fired pizza from winery’s pizza oven. In addition to providing the venue for the hands-on learning opportunity, Eagles Nest contributed to transportation costs and donated all the teaching materials and lunch.

   
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