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Edison & Ford Winter Estates Blog

Edison & Ford Winter Estates Blog

Wise Words from Thomas Edison

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On February 10th

book edison ford quotes“If parents pass enthusiasm along to their children, they will leave them an estates of incalculable value.” – Thomas Edison

In celebration of Thomas Edison’s Birthday on February 11, the Edison & Ford Winter Estates will be posting a quote a day for the entire month of February.  Many of these quotes can be found along with quotes from Henry Ford in The Edison & Ford Quote Book, available in our online store.

Wise Words from Henry Ford

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On July 31st

edison ford quote book“What I greatly hope for these children, and for children everywhere, is a new attitude toward life – free from the gullibility which thinks we can get something for nothing; free from the greed which thinks any permanent good can come of overreaching others.” – Henry Ford

In celebration of Henry Ford’s 150th Birthday on July 30, the Edison & Ford Winter Estates will be posting a quote a day for the entire month of July.

Many of these quotes can be found along with quotes from Thomas Edison in The Edison & Ford Quote Book, available in our online store.

Summer’s End Celebration – August 14

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On August 2nd

Free for teachers, summer campers, members and their families

On Saturday, August 14, 2010 the Edison & Ford Winter Estates will celebrate the end of summer and present a full day of specialized tours, hands-on science performances by the Estates Wild Wizard, fish printing workshops and the unveiling of the Estates newest tour, Edison & Ford Young Inventor’s Family Tour. 

Teachers, school staff and their families, summer campers and members will receive FREE admission and the public is invited to join and become an Estates member to receive FREE admission to the Estates

A schedule of activities include:
• Specialized teachers tours at 10 AM and 1 PM (registration required)
• Hands-on science performance by Estates Wild Wizard at 12 PM
• Fish printing workshop from 1 PM – 3 PM (bring a pre-washed t-shirt or shirts will be available for purchase)
• Sneak peek of the Estates newest tour, Edison &Ford Young Inventor’s Family Tour at 3 PM
• Activities throughout the day from affiliated organizations

Teachers and school staff must present a school issued identification badge to receive free admission.  Registration is required for specialized tours designed for educators.  To register call the Estates Education Department at 239-334-7419.

Edison & Ford Winter Estates Southwest Florida Residents Half Price Day

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On July 21st

Just in time for the end of summer vacation, on Saturday, August 21 from 9 AM – 5:30 PM, the Edison & Ford Winter Estates is offering half price admissions for all Southwest Florida Residents to tour the Estates Museum, Laboratory, Homes and Gardens.  Tickets will be $10 for adults and $5.50 for children (ages 6 -12, 5 and under are free).  Groups of 20 or more will also receive a special ticket price but must reserve in advance by calling the Estates.  Residents must present a driver’s license or voter registration card with photo ID to show their address in Lee, Hendry, Collier, Charlotte or Glades County.

In addition to an Estates tour, visitors will enjoy new Museum tours and invention demonstrations throughout the day. Demonstrations include the Edison phonograph every half hour, presentations on antique cars and tours of the Edison Research Laboratory. 
 
The Estates recently completed more than $12 million in improvements and restoration to the homes, gardens, swimming pool and other areas on both the Edison and Ford Estate.  They have been successfully managed by a new non-profit organization since 2006, the Edison & Ford Winter Estates, Inc. and have recently won both National Trust and National Garden Council top awards.
 
The Estates is open daily from 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. The Estates is the winner of the 2009 National Stewardship Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation and is an official project of “Save America’s Treasures” at the National Trust for Historic Preservation, a Florida Historic Landmark and a National Register Historic Site. For additional information call 239-334-7419 or visit the web site at www.efwefla.org.

Edison & Ford Winter Estates Celebrates Henry Ford’s Birthday

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On July 9th

The Edison & Ford Winter Estates will celebrate the 147th birthday of Henry Ford on Friday, July 30 at 10 AM.  The celebration will include cake and a “Sneak Peek” tour of the Ford Estate with Henry Ford.  Admission is FREE to Estates members; non members $20 adults, $11  children 6 -12, children 5 and under are free.  Admission includes a guided tour or self guided tour and audio wand of the historic homes, gardens, lab and Museum. 

“Ford’s birthday marks a very important day in American history, and we invite the public to share in the celebration…. Learn about Henry Ford…. And visit the beautiful winter homes of one of America’s greatest industrialists,” says Chris Pendleton, Estates president & CEO.  “Ford’s remarkable history spanned decades and totally changed our way of life.”

Ford facts include:
• Henry Ford grew up on a typical nineteenth-century farm in Dearborn, Michigan. At an early age he demonstrated an interest in mechanics and a dislike for farm work.
• Ford married Clara Bryant in 1888. He would later refer to Clara as “the Believer” for her faith in and support of his ideas.
• In 1891 Ford became an engineer for the Edison Illuminating Company, and was soon promoted to Chief Engineer. This position allowed him time to experiment with the internal combustion engine. Ford idolized Thomas Edison and met him during an 1896 company convention in New York, where Ford relayed his ideas for the engine. Ford recalled the importance of Edison’s encouragement: “[O]ut of the clear blue sky the greatest inventive genius in the world had given me complete approval.”
• In 1896, at the age of 33, Ford completed the Quadricycle, a self-propelled vehicle with four wire wheels which was steered with a tiller and had two forward speeds. Ford traveled around Detroit in his “horseless carriage,” to the amazement, as well as disdain, of its citizens.
• The Ford Motor Company was incorporated in 1903 with the Model A. In 1908 Ford introduced the Model T, realizing his lifelong dream of a vehicle that was easy to operate and maintain and able to handle the rough roads of the era. The Model T quickly became a huge success, with more than 10,000 sold in 1909.
• Ford is considered the father of modern manufacturing. As the popularity of the Model T escalated, Ford devised a system that combined division of labor, standardized and interchangeable parts, and the assembly line. This revolutionized automobile production by reducing the amount of time involved in automobile manufacturing and consequently lowering production costs. Mass production was born. By 1913 some 1000 cars were produced in a typical eight-hour shift.
• By the late teens, Ford was an American celebrity and the public could not seem to get enough of him. Ford came into his office one day and said, “You know, I think I ought to get a pair of whiskers. Everybody seems to spot me.”
• In 1914 Ford made his first visit to Fort Myers at the invitation of his friend Thomas Edison. From there the two embarked on an Everglades camping trip. Calling themselves “the Vagabonds,” Ford and Edison, along with Harvey Firestone and John Burroughs, would make many more camping trips throughout the next fifteen years. In 1916, Ford purchased his Fort Myers retreat, The Mangoes, for $20,000 and enlarged it by adding two family and staff wings.
• Ford was seriously interested in unifying urban and rural industry. He encouraged the idea of using agricultural products for industrial purposes. For example, Ford experimented with an automobile trunk made from soybean-based plastic. He was a partner in the Edison Botanical Research Lab located on Estates’ property.
• In the mid-1920s the New York Times estimated the assets of the Ford Motor Company at $1.2 billion, or about $13 billion today. Ford himself drew an average of about $4.5 million per year during this decade, or about $50 million in today’s dollars. Said Ford, “I’m in a peculiar position. There is nothing I want that I cannot have. But I do not want the things that money can buy. I want to live a life, to make the world a little better for having lived in it.”
• In 1928 Ford established and endowed The Edison Institute in Dearborn, MI (now The Henry Ford Museum & Greenfield Village), an indoor/outdoor museum created to illustrate and preserve the American experience and celebrate American ingenuity.
• In 1929 Ford threw a lavish party in Dearborn in honor of the fiftieth anniversary of Edison’s invention of the incandescent lamp. Ford presented his friend with a detailed reconstruction of Edison’s Menlo Park and the original 1887 Fort Myers laboratory at The Edison Institute. Edison became misty-eyed and remarked that “the memories of eighty-two years were flooding back.” Ford told reporters at the event, “We are ahead of all other countries today, simply and solely because we have Mr. Edison.”
• Ford loved dancing and in the 1920s began a massive effort to revive old-fashioned dancing. He sponsored a national tour of dancing master Benjamin Lovett. Dancing was also an important part of Ford’s social life in Fort Myers.
• Henry Ford earned the American Legion Distinguished Service Medal for his efforts on behalf of disabled veterans in both World Wars. In 1997, Life Magazine named him one of the “100 People Who Made the Millennium,” and in 2000 Time Magazine named him one of the “100 Most Important People of the Century.” In 2000 Forbes Magazine called him the “#1 Industrialist of the Century.”
• Ford returned to The Mangoes only sporadically after Thomas Edison’s death in 1931. In 1945 he sold it to Thomas and Gladys Biggar. In 1988, the City of Fort Myers purchased Henry Ford’s estate for $1.5 million, restored it to its historic appearance and opened it to the public in 1989.
• Henry Ford’s Fort Myers estate is open daily and now managed by the Edison & Ford Winter Estates, Inc., a non-profit organization.
• On July 30, 2007 a statue commemorating Henry Ford’s achievements and time in Fort Myers was created by D. J. Wilkins and donated by Orvall McCleary to the Estates.

Print a Fish T-Shirt for Dad and Visit on Father’s Day

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On June 4th

What:   Fish Printing Workshop & FREE admission for Fathers
When: Workshop on Saturday, June 19, Noon until 3 PM
            FREE admission for Dad’s on Sunday, June 20, all day 
Where:   Edison & Ford Winter Estates, 2350 McGregor Blvd., Fort Myers
Who:  Fathers, Grandfathers, children – bring the entire family

Join guest artists and architects for a Fish Printing Workshop (also known as gyotaku, the Japanese art of fish printing) at the Edison & Ford Winter Estates in the Edison Caretaker’s House on June 19 from Noon – 3 PM.    Participating artists include Karen Flanders, City of Fort Myers Councilman and architect Mike Flanders and Parker Mudgett Smith architect Sean Gilmore.   Local real fish will be provided by the Edison Fish Market.

For a one of a kind gift for Dad, participants will create fish print t-shirts or fish prints on other clothing.  The Estates will furnish the fish, paint, and skill for participants to make a lasting keepsake of the day and a great Father’s Day gift 

Both the Edison and Ford families were well known for their love of fishing and fish.  It is not known if they tried gyotaku although the art form has been around for centuries as it was the first method for recording information about fish by printing the fish impression on rice paper. 

The workshop is FREE (a $5 donation is suggested which goes toward Estates Summer Camp scholarships) and participants are encouraged to bring their own shirts or printable fabric.  The Estates will have some t-shirts in limited sizes available for purchase.

On Father’s Day, June 20th,  Dads will be admitted FREE to tour the Estates accompanied with their paid child.    FREE admission for dad’s includes a tour of the newly restored homes, the historical botanical gardens, the Estates Museum and the Edison Research Laboratory.

The Estates is open daily from 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. The Estates is the winner of the 2009 National Stewardship Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation and is an official project of “Save America’s Treasures” at the National Trust for Historic Preservation, a Florida Historic Landmark and a National Register Historic Site. For additional information call 239-334-7419 or visit the web site at www.efwefla.org.

Inventor’s Summer Camp 2010 Registration Open

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On February 9th

Registration for the fifth annual Edison & Ford Winter Estates Inventor’s Summer Camp is now open and this year the Wild Wizard will be offering classes all summer.  The Estates is a living lab where every project engages the campers in the sciences, arts, and history to ask questions and discover the answers for themselves while having fun.

Week-long camps begin the week of June 8, 2010 and continue to the final week, August 13.  Camp hours are 9 AM–4 PM, Monday – Friday.  Camps are open for grades 1–6 and sessions are separated by grade levels, 1st–3rd and 4th–6th.  Cost for Estates Members is $200; non members $230.  Scholarships will be available.

The Estates Inventor Summer Camp schedule is the following:

Session 1: June 8 – 11, Edison Invents, A five day adventure that captures the “Edison & Ford” experience.  Step back in time and investigate the inner workings of a light bulb, discover trees and plants brought here from around the world and create inspired works of art.

Sessions 2 & 7: June 14 – 18, July 19 – 23, Movie Making Magic, Act, direct, operate the camera and build sets.  Campers will be fully immersed in the art of filmmaking.  Participants will study Foley art (sound effects), movie magic (special effects), and script writing.  Campers will understand the basic techniques the pros use to get their ideas on the big screen.  After the camp is over each camper will receive a DVD of their film.

Sessions 3 & 8: June 21 – 25, July 26 – 30, Kitchen Chemistry, This mind-boggling camp is a combination of the best experiments the Wild Wizard has to offer.  Campers will learn how to take every day things found in the kitchen and make them do amazing things.  Top it all off with a solar cookout with hand made ice cream and root beer float party!

Session 4: June 28 – July 2, Animation, The perfect mix of science and art.  Campers will develop original characters, write their own story, choose between many different animation styles, and make a short film.  Discussions are based on positive character traits, conflict resolution, and the power of making good choices.  All the films are edited and formatted to a DVD for participants to take home and share with the whole family.

Sessions 5 & 10: July 5 – July 9, August 9 – 13, Spaceships & Rockets, The final frontier!  Campers will explore the outer reaches of the universe with our resident spaceman.  Campers will get to visit planets, collect samples, float on our Lunar Lander, and tons more!

Sessions 6: July 12 – July 16, ESI – Edison Science Investigation, Thomas Edison, known for his ability to turn normal objects into amazing inventions, made bamboo glow and tinfoil talk.  Now it’s your turn!  Each day, campers will be presented with a different mystery and they will only be given normal everyday items with which to solve them.  This fun and challenging camp will exercise your mind and body as the clock ticks away to solve the mystery!

Session 9: August 2 – August 6, Eager Engineers, “To be a good inventor you need a good imagination and a pile of junk” said Thomas Edison.  The Estate will supply the junk and jump start the imagination.  Campers will use recycled materials and develop Green Inventions such as robots that will perform a number of different tasks, conduct science experiments, participate in balloon car races, build bridges, and more!

Registration forms are available on line at http://www.efwefla.org/pdfs/summercamp.pdf or may be picked up at the Edison & Ford Winter Estates at 2350 McGregor Blvd.  For more information or to sign up, contact the Estates Education Coordinator at 239-334-7419.

Edison & Ford Winter Estates Programs – February 2010

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On January 28th

February at the Edison & Ford Winter Estates is highlighted with Thomas Edison’s Birthday Celebration, Estates Antique Car Show, Brunch with Mina Edison and the continuation of Sneak Peek Tours as well as a variety of other special programs throughout the month.  The February schedule of programs and events include:

Registration for Edison & Ford Winter Estates Inventor’s Summer Camp begins

The Estates Inventor’s Summer Camp is back again this year and the Wild Wizard is here all summer long.  Camp begins on June 8, 2010 and runs through August 13, 2010.  Camps are open for grades 1 – 6 and sessions are separated by grade levels.  Campers will make movies, become science detectives, launch objects into orbit, construct bridges and animate their own short films.  Registration forms are available on line at www.efwefla.org or are available at the Estates.  Estates Members $200; non members $230.  For more information on specific topics, dates and times contact the Estates Education Department at 239-334-7419.

Sneak Peek Tours February 4, 11, 18 & 25, 10:30 AM

NEW, behind-the-scenes tours inside the Edison and Ford homes open to the public and Estates members.  These unique tours are offered at no cost to Estates members and $40 for non members.  In addition, lunch will be served inside the Edison Caretaker’s House following the tour for $15 per person.  Due to the intimate nature of “Sneak Peek Tours”, space is limited and registration is required. 

Home Schoolers:  “Movie Making Secrets” February 5, 1 PM – 3 PM

Home schooled students will act, direct, operate a camera and build a set while learning about Edison’s contributions to the movie industry.  The programs follow the Lee County mandated program and addresses environmental science, history and reading SOLS.  Pre-visit curriculum materials will be mailed to registered families.  Registration is required.  Cost:  Estates Members $5; non members $15 (one adult, one child), additional $5 per child.

Antique Car Show  February 6 , 10 AM – 2PM

Nearly 100 antique car collectors will display their antique cars throughout the Ford Estate. Other activities during the day include live music, food available for purchase on the Ford Cottage Terrace, Mr. & Mrs. Ford leading informal tours of the Ford Estate.  Cost is FREE to Estates Members and $5 for non members. 

Antique Car Show Model T Tour and Lecture February 6, 11 AM & 1 PM

Learn the history of Henry Ford and his automobiles first-hand through the Estates collection.  Participants will tour the Ford Estate and meet antique car owners who will provide interesting information specific to their Ford.  Estates Members FREE; non members $5, lecture included in the price of Antique Car Show admission.

Naples Historical Society Presentation February 6, 2 PM, Estates Museum

Elaine Reed and John Mayer of the Naples Historical Society will present “Tales from the Past,” a history of the City of Naples.  They will discuss the pioneers and other colorful characters that put Naples on the map.  Estates Members FREE; non members $12 adults, $6 children ages 6 – 12 and includes admission to the Estates Lab and Museum. 

Etiquette at the Estates February 6, 11 AM – 1 PM, (Children ages 6 -12)

Etiquette at the Estates teaches children proper introduction, handshakes and dining etiquette during a three-course meal.  The classes will be taught by etiquette expert Suzanne Willis who has been teaching similar classes throughout the nation.  Registration is required. Cost:   Estates Members $40; non members $50.

New Volunteer Orientation February 9, 10 AM

Join Estates staff to learn about volunteer opportunities, Estates policies and general Museum information.  This is a mandatory training for all new Estates volunteers but potential volunteers are welcome. 

Edison’s 163rd Birthday Celebration and Book Signing February 11, 10 AM

Celebrate Edison’s birthday at the Estates with the staff, distinguished guests and Edison Park Elementary School students who will perform music from the Edison era.  Performance begins at 10:00 AM with cake to follow. The birthday celebration is FREE to the public.  In addition, Tom Smoot, Jr., author of The Edisons in Fort Myers; John Sheppard, author of One Man’s Family in Early Fort Myers; and Alan S. Maltz, author of Visions of Beauty Fort Myers, Sanibel & Beyond will be available to sign their books throughout the morning in the Estates public Heritage Gardens. 

Brunch with Mrs. Edison “Living with a Genius” February 12 & 13, 11 AM

Storyteller, writer, playwright and professional actress, Nan Colton, will bring to life the remarkable and charitable Mina Edison with unforgettable tales of “Living with a Genius”.  Brunch will be served in the beautiful Estates gardens. Hats are encouraged!  Reservations are required, seating is limited.  Estates Members $50; non members $60.  Group rates available.

Docent Training February 18, 9AM

New Estates volunteers who are interested in becoming Edison & Ford porch docents, Lab and Museum docents, or group tour docents of the Estates grounds must attend this mandatory meeting.

Art in the Gardens “Butterflies at the Estates” Exhibit February 28 – June 2010

In the heritage gardens at the Edison & Ford Winter Estates, Lee county students create an environmentally interactive artwork exhibit using recycled materials to make life-like garden art. The exhibit is sponsored by The Foundation of Lee County Public Schools, ArtFest, and Truly Nolen.  The exhibit is FREE to the public.

Edison & Ford Winter Estates Programs – January 2010

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On December 22nd

January at the Edison & Ford Winter Estates is highlighted with Sneak Peeks, Rain Barrel Workshop , the annual Estates Tropical Florida Bridal Fair as well as a variety of other special programs throughout the month.  The January schedule of programs and events include:

Edison & Ford Holiday Nights, Through – January 2, 5:30 PM – 9 PM

The Estates holiday tradition continues with “Edison & Ford Holiday Nights,” southwest Florida’s 34 year annual event.  The winter homes of the Edison and Ford families will be seasonally decorated with the “favorite things” of the Edison and Ford families.  The Edison Botanic Lab and Estates Museum will be open every evening with special exhibits as well as nightly holiday performances by area students and groups.  Group rates are available to groups of 20 or more people with advance reservations.  For more information call 239-334-7419. 

Home Schoolers: “Eager Engineers,” January 8, 1 PM – 3 PM

Home schooled students and their parents will be inspired by Henry Ford’s inventions and learn how simple machines become complex machines, as well as the science of building bridges.  The programs follow the Lee County mandated program and addresses environmental science, history and reading SOLS.  Pre-visit curriculum materials will be mailed to registered families.  Registration required. Estates Members $5; non members $15 (one adult, one child) additional $5 per child. 

Etiquette at the Estates:  Mina & Mimi’s Manners, January 9 & February 6, 11 AM

Mina Edison, wife of Thomas Edison, was a gracious hostess and interested in the well being of children and the community.  Following in this tradition, Etiquette at the Estates, includes one day (two hour) lessons in etiquette and social skills.  Children will learn proper introductions, handshakes and dining etiquette during a three course meal.  Class will be taught by Suzanne Willis who has been teaching similar classes at the Ritz-Carlton hotels throughout the nation.  Registration is requires.  Estates Members $40; non members $50. 

Wild Wizard Lab Show, “Eager Engineers,”  January 10, 2 PM

The Estates Wild Wizards present a series of lab experiments exploring some of Mr. Edison’s and Mr. Ford’s illuminating inventions.  Join the Wizards and explore how simple machines become complex machines as well as the science of building bridges.  Fun for all ages.  Estates Members are FREE, non members: $10 adults, $5 children and includes Estates Lab and Museum admission.

New Volunteer Orientation,  January 12, 10 AM

Join Estates staff to learn about volunteer opportunities, Estates policies and general Museum information.  This is a mandatory training for all new Estates volunteers but potential volunteers are welcome.

Sneak Peek Tours for the Public, January 14, 21, & 28, 10:30 AM

This season a NEW behind-the-scenes tour inside the Edison and Ford homes open to the public and Estates members.   These unique tours are offered at no cost to Estates members and $40 for non members.  In addition, lunch will be served riverside by the Ford Estate following the tour for $15 per person.  Due to the intimate nature of “Sneak Peek Tours,” space is limited and registration is required.  To become an Estates member call the Estates Membership office to receive free admission to the Estates and hundreds of museums and gardens throughout the United States, discounts and an inside look into the homes of two of the nations greatest inventors and their families. 

Docent Training, January 21, 9 AM

New Estates volunteers who are interested in becoming Edison & Ford porch, Lab and Museum docents, or group tour docents of the Estates grounds must attend this mandatory meeting.

Rain Barrel Workshop, January 23, 9 AM

Harvesting rainwater by using rain barrels has been around for thousands of years. Thomas Edison used cisterns and water tanks throughout his Fort Myers estate to help irrigate his gardens and to use for drinking water.   Join the Estates Horticulturist, Debbie Hughes and Tom Becker, Florida Yards and Neighborhoods for a unique approach on uses and construction of rain barrels and a tour of the Estates.  In addition southwest Florida artist, Marie Dyer will give a demonstration on painting your rain barrel to create a beautiful addition to your landscape.   Registration is required.  Estates Members $50; non members $55 and includes a rain barrel. 

Estates Tropical Florida Bridal Fair, January 24, 1 PM – 5 PM

The second annual Estates Tropical Florida Bridal Fair will be held on the beautiful grounds of the Ford Estate, southwest Florida’s premier wedding location.  With breathtaking water views, historic gardens and romantic sunsets the Estates is a perfect location for your special day.  Over 40 wedding professionals will be available to assist you as well as a bridal fashion show, dancing demonstrations, catering showcase and much more.  Cost: $5, FREE to brides.  Event is sponsored by Edison & Ford Winter Estates, Creative Events/Taylor Rental, Fort Myers, and Studio Six Eleven.

photo courtesy of Jamie Lee Photography

Coming in February: 

“Brunch with Mrs. Edison:  Living with a Genius,” February 19 & 20, 11 AM

Storyteller, writer, playwright and professional actress, Nan Colton will bring to life the remarkable and charitable Mina Edison with unforgettable tales of “living with a genius.”  Brunch will be served in the beautiful Estates gardens and garden hats are encouraged.  Reservations required, seating is limited.  Estates Members $50; non members $60.  Group rates are available.

Estates Home School Program 2009-2010

Posted by Edison Ford Winter Estates On August 31st

Home SchoolThe Edison & Ford Winter Estates Home School Program is a great way for children to experience history, science and the arts first-hand at the National Historic Register Site.

Beginning September 18 from 1 PM – 3 PM, Home School Programs will be offered each month throughout the year.  Activities are centered in the air-conditioned and restored Edison Caretaker’s House and include experiences throughout the historic site.

The Estates is a living lab, where each project or activity challenges students in the sciences, art and nature to ask questions and discover the answers for themselves while having fun. The following sessions are open for enrollment:

•           September 18, Living Lab:  Thomas Edison’s Fort Myers home was the site of his research lab and gardens.  Home schoolers will learn about Edison’s quest for rubber while performing hands-on botanical experiments. 

•           October 16, Can You Hear Me Now?:  The science of communication technology is advancing every day.  The phonograph was Edison’s favorite invention.  Home schoolers will learn about Thomas Edison and Henry Ford’s contributions to community technology, from phonograph to nano-iPod.

•           November 20, Rocks & Minerals & Thomas Edison:  Home schoolers will learn about minerals and rocks including what Edison did with iron ore and Edison’s own concrete mixture.

•           December 4, Experiments for the Holidays:  Home schoolers will study the science of the holidays, performing experiments including how a jolly chubby man can fit down a chimney, how reindeer fly and how a spinning dreidel keeps from falling, as well as a variety of new experiments. 

•           January 8, Eager Engineers:   Inspired by Henry Ford, Home schoolers will learn how simple machines become complex machines, as well as the science of building bridges.

•           February 5, Movie Making Secrets:  Home schoolers will act, direct, operate a camera and build sets to produce their own film. 

•           March 19, Power & Energy:  Home schoolers will study the power of different sources of energy that are used in today’s homes throughout the world. 

•           April 23, Ford Aerodynamics and Flight:  In addition to cars, Henry Ford built airplanes.  Home Schoolers will learn the history and science of flight. 

•           May 21, Stormy Weather:  Home schoolers will test their skills as meteorologists as they learn the science of predicting weather. 

Home schooled students and their parents can enroll in a half day of curriculum that follows the Florida Sunshine State Educational Standards for learning.  The program follows the Lee County mandated program and addresses environmental science, history and reading SOLS.  Pre-visit curriculum materials will be mailed to registered families.  Registration required. Estates members $5; non members $15 (one adult, one child) additional $5 per child.