What an awesome day we had at Sunny Sovereign Hill!
From exploring the streets and stores to experiencing the game ‘Gold Fever’, watching gold be poured (SMELTING is MELTING – make sure you ask your child about that one!) and going down the Red Hill Mine our students had an adventurous day full of smiles, fun and learning!
A BIG thank you to our parent helpers Justin, Bec, Kirsten, Alice, Suzie and Andrea, for taking time out of their week to help make this day even better for our students. Having smaller group allowed us to walk around with more freedom of choice in what we did with our day, which the students loved!
check out some student reviews of the day + pictures below!
On the 11th of September all the year fives went on an excursion to Sovereign Hill in Ballarat. We all split up into different groups with different teachers. We did lots of fun activities like went bowling which was really old fashioned, did some candle dipping which was quite fun and watched how they made the candles with wax, went into the dark Red hill mine which we saw cool things inside, went into the lollie shop which as we all know most people really enjoyed and bought heaps of delicious treats with their money, we even went gold panning and some people even found little bits and specks of gold which they kept safely in their bags packed away, and while all this was happening we even saw men riding horses and donkeys which some people went to pat. We saw all the different ways people slept and lived in their tents and also saw the gold pour which was really interesting and at the very end, we played a really fun game called ‘Gold fever’! – Phoebe
On Wednesday the 11th of September, the grade fives enjoyed a trip to Sovereign Hill. After an hour and a half bus ride, we arrived and had a sneaky trip to the lolly shop before going to the legendary gold pour. A humorous blacksmith who would have passed as a stand up comedian told us how gold was created, and the process it had to go through before it was turned into a 24 karat gold bar. Bullion gold, it was called. Which is as gold as gold can get, 99.99% gold. When he was telling us what smelting was, he made sure we never forgot it by saying “Schmelting is melting’ in a hilarious German accent. We had some free time to eat lunch and go gold panning before our next activity. Many students found little flakes of gold in their pans after learning how it was done. There were people dressed up in old fashioned clothes from the gold rush period (1851-1861) handing out top tips for the most gold. It was really hard work, and not as easy as some people make it out to be. We then played a game all together. Two bankers and two police officers were chosen, then everybody else was put into groups. There were the English family, a group of Americans, a group of Irish people, a crew of sailors who had jumped ship, and a group of Chinese people who could speak no English. Each group started off with a cup for collecting their ‘gold’ in (the gold was just metal balls), a wallet for the money they got, and a 4 neckerchiefs for each group member (each group had a different colour). Each group also started off with a certain amount of money, some people had more than others though. Nobody started off with a licence. And to be on the goldfield, you needed a licence. So you had to start off mining your gold without a licence and hope the coppers didn’t catch you, then sell your gold to the bankers, and get money in return, then you’d have to buy licences for everyone in your group from the police. It you were caught on the goldfield without a licence, you would get put in jail unless you could pay a fine. Your other group members would need to bail you out for a pound. But if you resisted arrest, it would be 2 pounds. It was really fun, the group at the end who had the most money won the game. The English family won eventually with 25 pounds, but the Irish were close behind with 21 and ten shillings. The game enhanced our learning about the gold rush a lot. We split up our groups again and had another short break before going down the Red Hill Mine! A few people were spooked in the darkness, but I thought it was really cool. We walked down a seemingly never ending staircase and listened to a voice telling us where to go, but also a story on the way. We also learnt about the ‘Welcome Nugget’. – Jo