23 Oct Educational farm Le Emozioni
While stroking a bunch of soft little bunnies, Daniela, a genuine down-to-earth young lady, is feeding them and introducing us to her mother Laura. Laura is a talkative and gracious woman, the owner of the Educational farm Le Emozioni in Costigliole d’Asti, right in the heart of Monferrato.
“One day I saw a woman pointing a cow, and say to her kid: ‘Look, a bull! See how he has horns? That means it is a bull’.
Perhaps it was back then that I had the idea to transform our farm into an educational farm”. Dealing with nature is not something obvious: you have to learn it, like everything else. This is why Laura opened Le Emozioni: to share her knowledge with everybody, especially with children.
Laura’s family established the farm in 1986 by breeding purebred Piedmontese cattle in conjunction with other agricultural activities.
Now Laura, her husband Michele and children Daniela and Andrea, run a large farm, an on-site kindergarten, educational farm activities in summer and a farm-stay with three rooms (yeah, around here workaholic is a compliment 🙂 ).
For a child it is like to be into Noah’s ark: all animals have their own name, and Laura knows the character of each one. Dogs are the first enthusiast you encounter, as you are welcomed into the courtyard they share peacefully with grown up cats and kittens.
Around the farm you will meet plenty other animals each living in their own space: the black pig likes to be cuddled and scratched on the belly, the goats are really curious about newcomers, the cows like caresses on the nose and the colourful birds of the aviary love to sing loud while the parrots speak a few words (but be careful to do not let the cats come in!).
In the farm’s stable, we found a young mare that just had a foal and two friendly bulls; while herds of cows, ponies, a donkey and eight horses run free in the fields of this vast farm.
“It is a demanding job, but the rewards are also really intense” says Laura: “Working with children means, first of all, looking after them. It is great to see how quickly they pick up how to relate to animals, respect them and live a healthy relationship with nature” a skill that sometimes even adults are missing.
The farm is very active: here children can come after school and throughout the summer. They can follow an educational program that ranges from animal care, growing vegetables for consumption, play group and water games, nature walks, doing their homework and other educational activities.
At the farm’s restaurant, you can eat food produced on-site like veggies from the garden, meat dishes and pizza. During the week the restaurant is open only by reservation. Each month the family organises a barbeque event related to the various aspects of farming, which could be an interesting thing to do if you happen to visit the Asti area.
What most surprised us was the patience and energy of the family, enlarged every day by welcoming up to 20 children aged from 3 to 12 years old. “It is a big responsibility, but we found that this way the children become more responsible themselves: teaching them how to care for farm animals and the garden, children learn how to respect each other, to include other kids in games, to understand rules and the reasons behind them“.
These are fun activities for the children, and a relief for Laura’s family hard work on the farm, as it gets a little bit more fun.
You can visit with your family and kids the farm Le Emozioni by booking:
Fattoria Didattica Le Emozioni
Written by Tommaso Zavattaro | Editing and photography by Monica Marescalchi