Saturday, December 20, 2008

Leonis Adobe Museum Trip

By Taylor G., Taylor S., Bethany, Shane F.,

Learning about your community is part of the third grade Social Studies curriculum. To learn more about the history of our community, all third graders visited the Leonis Adobe Museum.

Miguel Leonis and his Chumash bride, Espiritu, lived in the adobe.

At first, we gathered around the giant oak tree. Our docent told us this tree was over 600 years old!

All we could find under the oak, were acorn leaves and acorn caps. The squirrels have been busy!

Water was needed at the ranch. Here the docent explains about how water is pumped from the ground.

Here is one of the cowgirls working hard at the pump!

Later, a windmill was added. The wind provided the energy to pump up the water, and it was then stored in the water tank.

Water was needed to wash the clothes. Here is a photo of a washboard and wringer.

Water was also used for...bathing! The tub was small so it could be picked up and carried out to the garden. The bathwater was reused to water the plants.

Inside the house, the docent explained who lived in the house and what kind of a life they lived. We were surprised to see the kitchen floor was dirt!

Upstairs we got to see some sample adobe bricks and learned more about them. Adobe is made of mud, straw, and animal manure.

Upstairs there was a museum room with old books, musical instruments, and a journal. There were sample quill pens on the desk so we could see what people used to use for writing.

During our field trip to Leonis Adobe Museum, we made tortillas and butter.

The first step was to get yellow corn from the garden. Then we took all the corn off the cob. Next, we put the kernels in a bowl and mashed it into
a yellow corn powder.

Water was added to the corn meal to make a corn tortilla mix. Next, the workers rolled the batter into a ball and pressed it flat in the iron tortilla press. It was hard work keeping the ranch going!

At Leonis Adobe we saw goats, Texas long horns, and sheep. They used fur from the sheep for wool blankets, and the meat for food. The goats' milk was used for drinking and making cheese. The Texas long horns provided meat for food, fur for blankets, and
manure for planting.

Here is an anvil and whetstone used by the blacksmith.

A big part of life on the ranch was tending the animals. Here is one of the ranchers showing off his skills with the lasso!


We fed the animals hay. It tickled when they took the hay from our hands.

We learned that goats and sheep have rectangular pupils unlike ours which are circular.

At the Leonis Adobe Museum the girls made rag dolls. We could have a pink doll or a green doll. The docent gave us a long string and three little strings. With the short strings, we made two arms and a head. Finally, we knotted the long string to the doll so we could wear it as a necklace. During the 1880s, girls at Leonis Adobe used the wool from the sheep to make their dolls.

Back in the 1880s, Miguel and Espirtu did not have indoor bathrooms. They had to walk outside to an outhouse. That must have been a long, cold walk!

After a long day working at the adobe, we were treated to yummy corn tortillas and homemade butter! They were delicious!

The road in front of the Leonis Adobe was part of the trail that connected the 21 missions from San Diego to San Fransisco. It was called the "El Camino Real" or "King's Highway".

A great time was had by all, and much was learned about the history of Calabasas.

The End


  1. dear class,


  2. Dear Room 12,

    It looked like you had a wonderful trip to Leonis Adobe. All the photos gave me a great idea of what you did there. I especially liked the photo of the adobe bricks and the goat (I did not know about rectangular interesting!). I think it's great that you are posting your trips. In doing so, you are teaching others!

    Fabulous work!

    Mrs. Powers

  3. Dear Mrs. Powers,

    Thanks for taking the time to read our blog and comment! You are one of our loyal readers!

    Do you use the RSS feature to follow our blog?

    Thanks again for your support!

    Mrs. Yollis

  4. Dear Class,

    We love the pictures that Mrs. Yollis took and how we got to experience them up close! We especially liked the Texas long horns rear-end.

    Clementine and Taylor S.

  5. Dear Class,

    The field trip to Leonis Adobe was really fun. I liked the Texas Long Horns and the goats. The most exciting part was feeding the goats.

    Your classmate,


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