The National Agriculture Center and Hall of Fame is a great place for kids to learn about food and how it's grown. The Ag will tell you "If you eat than you're involved in agriculture". Kids can learn about how eggs get from hen to store, explore a beehive, do some farm chores and explore the interactive exhibits.
Before Your Visit:
- You'll do a lot of walking at the Ag, some will be outside, so wear comfortable shoes.
- Consider visiting during one of their special events when additional family-friendly activities are offered.
- The miniature train runs Weds – Fri and Sundays in the summer months.
Explore The Ag Museum:
The National Agricultural Center has several buildings that you can visit.
- Explore the Old Town:
- See the 1917 One-room schoolhouse to learn how kids use to attend school
- The General Store area depicts what shopping would have been like in the early 1900’s
- The Poultry hatchery is open during special events - stop by and visit the hens
- The Blacksmith also works during special events and school tours
- Don't forget to see the Train depot for a ride on the miniature train
- Smith House is an old farm house
- Stop in the backyard and help do some farm chores such as hanging the laundry and grinding corn to feed the hens.
- Talk to your kids about how older houses differ from the ones we live in: No electricity, no cupboards in the kitchen since there wasn’t food to store, everything was harvested or made daily.
- Point out some of the unique items: phonograph, bird cage was a very popular decoration, sewing machine was necessary, and chamber pots in the bedrooms.
- In the Poultry Building, kids can learn about hens & eggs
- See the huge rooster collection from around the world – which is your favorite?
- Learn about what happens after the hens lay eggs
- The Tractor Building has many old tractors, cars, etc. Kids can also plant seeds to take home.
- The Dairy Exhibit in main building lets kids milk some (pretend) cows, play a game of cow pie toss, gather eggs and look around for ‘’Little man’ & Bigman’ the Ag’s cats.
- Explore in the main building to see:
- Llearn about all the things that are made from corn and why it's so important to us.
- Buzz your way through a giant beehive - Do a bee dance, dress up like a beekeeper, learn about pollination and find out where the bees have gone.
- View old switchboards and phones (they use to have cords on them!) – Check out the collection of mechnical ‘piggy’ banks – there's even one to try!
- Play some fun online games at My American Farm to learn more about food & farming.
- Check out a few of these great books:
"The Life and Times of the Honeybee" by Charles Micucci is an informative and amusing book about the lifecycle, work and history of the honeybee. Kids will enjoy learning about the importance of bees in helping us to produce food.
In this Level 2 Science reader, "Corn is Maize" by Aliki, kids learn about how Native Americans used corn, the best way to store and grow it and all the wonderful things that are made from corn.
Other places in Kansas City that highlight agriculture and farming include:
- Deanna Rose Farmstead where you can learn about cows and milking
- The Children's Garden in Swope Park