For the last week, my grandsons, Owen and Grant, have been studying the Morse Code. I thought it would be good to let them join in on the ARRL Kid's Day activities to go along with their studies so they could get a feel of what Ham Radio is all about.
|Grant Calling "CQ Kid's Day"|
Once the station was operational, we went over how they would talk on the radio. Tim uses a footswitch to key the transmitter so they had to learn to step on that switch when they wanted to talk. We also went over the basics of what they needed to say in the QSO's and I created a short "cheat sheet" for them to follow. You can see the "Cheat Sheets" lying on the keyboard. They only looked at that sheet for the first few QSO's because they had memorized everything they needed to say.
|Owen Listening for a Call|
Since the same day was also the West Virginia QSO Party, we had a couple of stations ask the boys what County they were in so they could count the QSO in the WVQP. Owen then decided to simply say, "I'm located in Hurricane, West Virginia, and that's in Putnam County" with each of his QSO's!
During the video below, you can hear that Owen actually had a pileup coming back to him plus a WA6 station even called in during his QSO. The recorded audio is a bit low so you might need to "Crank It Up" to hear everything.
Near the end of our operating time we even managed a QSO with the Dorothy Grant Elementary School in Fontana, CA. That school has their own Ham Radio Club and uses the callsign, K6DGE. HERE is their web site. Back in April I was privileged to attend one of their Field Day events where the kids learned electronics, built an antenna and operated the radio.
We had to leave the air by 4 p.m. because the boys had other engagements. They had paid close attention to our startup of all Tim's equipment and they helped me shut everything down. In fact, Grant spotted that I had left the rotor turned on and brought that to my attention before we left.
Later, at the Dairy Queen, where we were enjoying a celebratory Blizzard after our Kid's Day operation, Grant looked up at me and said, "Grandpa, I had a really good time!" Yep, that's what it's all about, folks! Ham Radio is about having a Good Time!