Fibres at Ambury Farm

May 14, 2019 at 9:55 AM

As part of their science enquiry looking at fibres, the Girls’ School Year 4-6 students visited Ambury Regional Park. From wool, to hair, feathers and fur, the girls enjoyed their experience discovering the origin and uses of natural fibres and their link to technology through history.

Ambury is a working farm fronting Manukau Harbour with walkways though the paddocks. The girls enjoyed the chance to get close to cows, pigs, goats, rabbits, sheep, horses and birds and with each interaction, the girls were encouraged to examine the animals’ fibres, think about the purpose they serve, what they could be used for and the similarities and differences between each of them. In the shearing shed, the girls were given a shearing demonstration and the ranger explained how sheep are raised to produce different types of wool. The girls were given the chance to touch and smell the wool to spot the differences.

In the farm classroom, the girls worked with the fibres, observing them using lenses and microscopes, testing their strength and exploring new skills of weaving, spinning, knitting and crochet. They were also challenged with guessing which fibres matched the correct animal - not so easy when it came to Copworth and Merino sheep wool!

By the end of the trip, the girls were full of facts about fibres and were excited to learn more from yarn spinner, Laurelle Albrecht, on their return to school. Laurelle brought a spinning wheel to demonstrate how to spin a yarn. She also brought in a range of wools, including silks, alpaca, fleeces and garments to see and touch, and the girls were also given a chance to spin a yarn themselves!

From their visit to the farm and a visit from Laurelle, the girls had a fantastic time and walked away with a greater understanding of fibres and how they can be used.

Thank you, Ambury Farm, Laurelle and parent helpers for your time and sharing your expertise.

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