The third week of outreach is in the books - and I'm getting to know Mercer County (Harrodsburg) very well! This is my ninth year doing outreach and I think I've been to two schools in Mercer County during that time. Until this year. Of my 9 schools I've been to this year, 4 of them have been Mercer County.  

My week started off at King Middle School (guess what county? You got it - Mercer!) I taught the "Science on the Track" program to seventh graders and it was well received. It even rained a little on the way home - the first time it's rained in forever.  

The next day it was right back down I-64, then down Hwy 127 to....yep, Mercer County. This time to a small town called Burgin.

You don't see very many Pre-K through 12th grade schools left - but Burgin is one of those. It was a good day, teaching programs in the cafeteria, a classroom, then to the gym, then back to the cafeteria. My programs are very portable, so no big deal. Some schools have fancy auditoriums, while others usually put me in the gym or library - and others just don't have much room at all.  

Which takes us to - where are the five weirdest places I've ever taught?  

Cafeteria WHILE the other kids were eating lunch. A hallway. A parking lot. Around a bonfire (this was at a state park that was doing a horse camp). A baseball diamond (the kids sat on these old wooden bleachers while I taught at home plate. On Friday I went to Morningside Elementary and got lost for the first time of the year. Mapquest let me down, but I recovered and made it on time (barely). I finally got to teach my favorite program, "Vanishing Bluegrass", to some VERY enthusiastic fourth graders who really knew how to role play the story - but also gave really intelligent and thoughtful responses to questions dealing with land conservation and suburban sprawl. A good way to end a work week!, 9 schools down - 70-some to go!

Ronnie Dreistadt

Manager of Education Services for the Kentucky Derby Museum.