Tuesday, 2 February 2016

The Industrial Revolution and Canals

We haven't previously studied canals, narrowboats or their purpose in Britain's rapidly advancing industry of the 1800s. So our study of the Georgians and the beginning of the Industrial Revolution seemed a good time to introduce this part of our industrial heritage to the kiddies.

We started with a morning making books about canals. These were mainly pictures we cut and re-used to give the children a visual idea of canal and narrowboat culture. We looked at narrowboat equipment and moorings, locks, ropes, bridges and wildlife. 

The Boy benefited hugely from this work, realising he could spell a lot of the things he was sticking into his book. It became a vocabulary book and his proud face at the end of our morning was a sight for any home schooling Mama to behold!

This morning we visited Cosgrove Lock in Milton Keynes. It was awesome and the children were thrilled to see the boats and the locks. We were lucky enough to see the lock working and I am so pleased that the kiddies now have a real idea of the engineering behind them.

We visited the Iron Trunk Aqueduct which is a stunning example of Georgian engineering and architecture.

I love these munchkins.

We even spotted some alpacas.

A narrowboat passing through the lock.

The external water gushed into the lock and levelled it up to allow the boat to pass through the gates.

The first gates were closed and the second gates were opened to allow the water to gush into the next part of the canal, lowering the boat and allowing it to pass through the second gates. Amazing.

We had rosy cheeks and positive comments all the way home!