Tuesday, January 31, 2017

First Excursion of the Year ~ Australian Museum

We decided to end our summer holidays/begin our new school year with a trip to the city to visit the Australian Museum.  We didn't get to have a play date with our best homeschool friends so they joined us for a BIG day out!

The weather was beastly with the high temperature reaching 39C/103F for the second day in a row, so it was AWESOME to wait out the remainder of the heatwave in an air conditioned building.  By the time we headed home in the late afternoon, the cool change was on its way!

We started the day in the First Australians exhibit and had a good long look at all the Aboriginal artifacts.

This is a boat made from bark stripped off the tree.  The tree survives the removal of the bark and eventually repairs itself enough to grow new bark in the stripped space. 

Sadly these are not the best photos I've ever taken, but we loved the hand woven baskets, the didgeridoos, and the elaborate crocodile mask.

We learned a lot about the different kinds of boomerangs the aboriginals made/used, and admired the display wall of various different spears, boomerangs, and other tools. 

These are grave markers and they are intricate and beautiful. 

Monster desperately wanted his photo taken while holding a spear and a shield. 

Map of Australia showing where the different Aboriginal tribes lived. 

Examples of the beautiful artwork were everywhere in the room. 

The boys were excited to find this Aboriginal seasons "calendar" as we've studied the differences between the "four" seasons that the Sydney area experiences in a calendar year, to the numerous seasons that the Aboriginals describe. 

From there we moved on to the Wild Planet room... 

Monkey and Munchkin were fascinated with the tank with sea urchins and sea snails and anenomes in it. 

I've always been interested and intrigued by the Bower bird, and Munchkin found it cool as well. 

Always look up in the museum... you are likely to find lizards!! ;-) 

Munchkin was very interested to read and learn about The Water Holding Frog, Spinifex Jumping mice, and Emus!! 

Always, the main reason we visit the Australian Museum, is for the dinosaur room! 

Monkey's best friend posing in front of the T-Rex mouth!! 

Monkey and Munchkin (with their respective best friends) enjoyed "digging" for fossils. 

They have seen it dozens of times, but ALWAYS stop to watch the little dinosaur video. 

Then it was on to the Pacific Spirit room, which was new to all of us. 

This headdress was stunning. Read more about it in the photo above. 

We finished our day in the Search and Discover room... with bugs, bugs and more bugs!
I find the stick insects and leaf insects fascinating!! 

The boys really enjoyed searching through the "droppings" from the stick and leaf insect cages looking for eggs.  They found several and proudly returned them to the museum staff to be returned to the cages so they could hatch and grow!! 

It was funny to sit and observe Munchkin and his best friend as they viewed things through the microscope, and carried on a lively discussion about what they were doing and seeing! 

All the children took turns holding this magnificent lady - and yes - the museum staff gave us a lesson on how to tell the gender of stick/leaf insects!!

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