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04:37 pm: National Building Museum–Orville Style.

 Today, I went on a field trip with Orville’s class. Because, in previous years, Orville tended to discard his human seeming and return to his tornado form on field trips, I have gone on nearly every trip he has ever had. Nowadays, he really is more a human than a tornado, but the tradition of me going and us talking on the bus each way remains. So, I went. 

This time, we went to the National Building Museum, a beautiful building used for Presidential Inaugural Balls. There were columns so wide that Orville and I, holding hands, could only span a third or a fourth of their circumference. There were some interesting exhibits, including one of Lego buildings that was amazing. The Lego Falling Water was terrific! 

The 6th grade kids were invited into a classroom where they participated in planning a city. First they decided what the city needed. Then, they each built a building. 

The map had a Y shaped river that cut sections of the city off from each other. Orville immediately said that the city needed a bridge. He also got to say a lot of other things. He had his hand up for every question, and if he got called on, he always had an answer. He even reminded the woman in charge of points she hadn’t covered yet, stuff he’d learned in the prep-classes for this trip in school. 

While he interrupts too much (and tugged on the woman when she didn’t pick him right away), it is always delightful to see how much he knows and understands. The majority of the kids sit there like lumps, and Orville is just brimming over with comments and suggestions. Seeing him, reminded me a lot of young me. 

When it came time to build, Orville and I build a bridge and a tunnel. Because this was infrastructure rather than the other categories, they had Orville put it down all by himself at the end. It looked quite handsome on the map, and he cleverly found the roads and made sure our structures spanned the rivers where the roads were. 

Orville’s Masterpiece

On the way up and down, we discussed Spore Hero, and Orville’s Spore races. On the way back, we applied what we had learned to discuss the architecture of the civilization of his four races. It was so much fun to see how the aspects he had chosen for his creatures; wings, no arms, swimming, etc., translated into how they would build their cities—adding towers with balconies for fliers, canals for the swimmers, etc. We had a great time discussing it all. 

And the tunnel spanning another branch of the river.


Can’t do better than a day trip with Orville.

Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon.


[User Picture]
Date:January 7th, 2011 01:35 am (UTC)
In middle school there is an extra-curricular contest called "Future City" sponsored by an engineering consortium. If he enjoyed today's adventure then you should see if his middle school participates. It's fun, they use a specially adapted version of SimCity and then build a scale model of the city as well. My BFF from Colorado's daughter came to DC with her school last year.
[User Picture]
Date:January 7th, 2011 01:00 pm (UTC)

He seemed very interested in the trip. Whether he would be interested under other circustances, I don't know...but definitely worth keeping in mind.
[User Picture]
Date:January 7th, 2011 09:44 pm (UTC)
I derived as much pleasure from attending our children's field trips as they did, I'm sure. It's a special time to share together.
[User Picture]
Date:January 7th, 2011 09:50 pm (UTC)
I am so glad that my schedule allows me to attend most of the field trips. I entirely agree. I love them and I have a great time with the kids.

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