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Week 7 Spring Session

What Happened?

The forest is coming alive with insects again. We saw dragonflies, damsel flies, millipedes, water-striders, pill pugs, and of course mosquitoes! The forest also has some newly arrived nettle, poison oak, and poison ivy. We also found a beautiful Jack in the Pulpit plant and a few frogs. The children have been enjoying the opportunities to play in the sand and mud on the edge of the Vivery river. Thanks to Chey for organizing the lost and found materials. Please see photos of found items below and let us know if you recognize any missing items. Please also take note of the recent parking changes. Parking with permit is only allowed on the north side of the road where indicated by signs along the metal guard rail.


Monday- Holiday


Tuesday

Busy fun day with lots of excitement about frog and salamander hunting. Some children made music with sticks on the metal bridge. During play a cheetah ate Matt's legs off and he needed medicine to grow them back. He was poisoned by a husband and wife . . . who then gave him the antidote. Zoey and Thomas created their own adventure game walking on the big log. The smooth part was the "Smooth Start", then ducked under a branch called the "spider tree", which lead to "Spike City" (the part of the logs with lots of spiky branches sticking up), and continued on to "Flat Lands" where they would jump off and run around all excited. Balancing and leaf rubbing were also popular. Rescuing a plastic ring toy that was thrown too high involved lots of problem solving to figure out how to knock it down. We made the connection with the picture book "Stuck" which we re-read later in the day. Isaac made a treasure hunt for the other children with help from Ashley.




Wednesday (younger group)

There were a lot of big, full moon, feelings expressed throughout the day. Many people noticed how the forest helped them to calm down. We finally completed the planting activity from Earth Week. The rain previous weeks prevented us. The activity was well received and they were able to take their pots home. Not sure they all made it there however!


We read "What emotion am I Feeling." This was a theme throughout the morning. They identified skills to feel better. Thomas suggested to take a deep breath, Airport AKA Miles suggested to jump up and down.


Wednesday (older group)

I’d say the day began muggy, in Davidson Park, with a snake found by Kai! He relocated it away from the street in the muddy river and meadow. We braved heavy mosquito marshes and saw slugs and centipedes by the Gnome Village, and then went back to Davidson Green to play tag. But with relief from mosquitoes came more heat. We took a vote and then headed to the beach of Thompson Park. There we explored more wildlife, the lake, play, quiet/meditative moments with shade and a breeze, drawing with our sketch pads, the marsh and a minnow. We drafted up agreements and ideas all along the Lake of Two Mountains, also once known as the Kichissippi which means Big River in Anishinabemowin. And Oliver reminded us we were on the ancestral land of Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee. We cleaned the beach because every day is earth day!



Thursday

Lovely warm and breezy day! Lots of slugs that were found (they were even given names), a popular game of guess-the-animal charades, a mini obstacle course and some practising of writing numbers and names in the morning! This morning the kids seemed a bit off... maybe the mosquito bites and the warm weather taxed them a bit this week. But before long there was great energy with games, exercises, drawing, hikes, and afternoon dips in the creek. We read "Blaze A Trail (Bernstein Bears)" and "I Brought My Frog to the Library."


Friday

We made a rope ladder with tree branches to see the roof of the shelter. Many children were absent but we got to meet Nyla's father, Jason, who joined her for the morning session. A frog hunt at the river bank was not successful. We found a round seed pod floating in the river that we cut open to see what was inside. The afternoon session included drawing, playing with stretchy pink fabric and water play.


What Does It Mean?

The seasonal changes of more insects and toxic plant life requires adaptation in our behaviours. The children need support to only enjoy unknown plants with their eyes. We will not be playing directly beside any toxic plants that we identify. We need to educate the entire community to identify the different toxic plants for community well-being and risk management.


What's Next?

We will enjoy increased water, sand, and mud play on the banks on the Vivery River, as long as the weather permits us. We will learn more about identifying toxic plants. We will share stories and act them out. We will make maps to teach new people where the toxic plants are located this season, and the cool climbing trees and balancing logs.

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