Clintonville Middle School students learned about the stars and galaxies above their heads, and the fossils and the earth below their feet, thanks to a $1,000 grant from the Natural World for Kids Fund within the Clintonville Community Foundation, our regional affiliate partner.
Last fall, eighth graders went to Barlow Planetarium at UW-Oshkosh Fox Cities Campus. They learned about how stars are born, how they are classified, and the amazing ways they die. Students had tours of the constellations and the stars and planets in the current nighttime sky. Students were told a mythological story of the nighttime sky and how the constellations got their names.
While on campus, students also visited the Weis Earth Science Museum, where they made seismic waves and watched them on a seismometer. They also walked through a mine tunnel and touched fossils. Students discovered there were once volcanoes, mountains and tropical reefs right here in Wisconsin. In fact, they learned that every rock tells a story.
“Without the financial aid, most students would not have been able to attend this ‘out of this world’ experience,” said teacher Todd Taylor. “They learned from people other than their teachers, in a setting outside of their classroom. When the director asked questions about astronomical events, the students usually had the answer. It had been about two years since our last field trip.”
In addition to these wonderful learning experiences, the grant funded a field trip for fourth graders to a cranberry marsh, second graders to the NEW Zoo, and first graders to the Central Wisconsin Environmental Station.
The Clintonville Area Foundation is one of five geographic affiliates we partner with in the Fox Valley. Our other partners include Brillion Area Family of Funds, Chilton Area Community Foundation, Shawano Area Community Foundation and Waupaca Area Community Foundation.