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Finders Keepers

What kinds of animals are found around Harrington Pond over the winter? How are they able to survive the winter? Is the strategy for survival the same for all animals? Think about squirrels vs chipmunks.

All animals including humans need food to survive. Starting the day right with a healthy breakfast helps us be better learners at Coyote Nature School. Some animals will hunt and eat on the run while others will store food away. What animals are busy collecting acorns? We had a friendly competition between animals which find and store acorns. Teams cheered each other on to be the first to fill their ‘stash’. Did you have a hard time finding the acorns on the ground? What made it hard or easy for you when looking for the acorns? What animal came by and stole a few acorns from your ‘stash’?

Animals that are active or awake in the winter need to stay alert to stay alive. Alert is being watchful and ready for danger. Today, we used all of our senses to practice being alert. As we walked down the trail to Cedar Castle, which colour of letter were you looking for? Each team was looking for five animal cards to find and then solve for the secret word which connects all their animal cards together. What was your team’s secret word? What were some of the animals you found? What were the four secret words? Hint: _WAKE, MO_ER, SLE_P, CR_AK What other signs of animals did we find along the trail? Wolf saw signs of a beaver along the trail. What were those signs? Animals can leave all sorts of signs along the trails which can tell us a story. Can you tell a story about the beaver(s) at Harrington Pond?

What is the difference between a predator and a prey animal? Which one needs to be more alert? In our afternoon activity, the fox group (Fox was sick today and we missed her leading the fox group) went on a hunt to find the group of mice. Which group was the predator and which group was the prey? Chalk blazes and pegs were used as signs by the prey for the predators to follow. We look forward to trying this activity again but switching up the groups to experience being hunter and hunted.

It was nice to see buddies reading to each other as part of our time at the library. They were practicing their strategies for sounding out words, giving each other help and praise when needed. What was it like to read to someone? This coming week, I challenge you to read to a family member.

Using some ideas about survival last week, we spent some time renovating Tent Shelter in Mystery Forest. What makes a shelter good? Remember how we tested the Pumpkin Pal shelters last week? Did we do a good job? What do we need to work on?

Sometimes Mystery Forest is noisy. Today everyone heard the tree that fell in the forest. Our new friend Beaver managed to break off a large tree branch. Don’t worry everyone was okay. The forest changes naturally, sometimes with a little help from animals and sometimes by humans.

Visiting with tree friends in Mystery Forest was a quiet time. What did you discover during your visit with your tree friend?

Writing about our day in our journals was a nice way to reflect and record about some of the things we learned and experienced today. Thanks to Raccoon for recording our day with his picture taking skills and thanks to Tamarack for her care and attention to our ‘animal’ friends.


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