There are so many ways to celebrate Summer. This year campers celebrated with each other and their connections to nature. This week would not be possible without the help of all of the following Nature Mentors: Nina (Moraine), Abbey (Blue Jay), Laynee (Badger), Cheryl (Beaver).
Our nature friends spend time together exploring and getting to know each other. Some of our nature encounters in the air and on land included finding a little brown snake, spiders, dragonflies, mosquitoes, crickets, grasshoppers, pill bugs, worms, ants, crows, turkey vultures. In the water, we found crayfish, caddisfly larvae, leeches, clams, slugs, snails and beetles. Being careful and caring with the animals we see and with each other is important. What happened to the little brown snake we found?
There were also a lot of plants we saw during our travels too. In the forest, we looked at trees with our hands while blindfolded. It was an interesting way to meet a tree. Just like our nature friends the forest comes in all different ages, sizes and varieties. One of the smallest trees we saw was growing out a rock!
A visit to the Garden in Harrington gave everyone a chance to be the gardener. Walk in the garden full of so many colours of flowers. A gardener needs to protect the plants with nets sometimes. Does your child remember some of the other jobs a gardener has to do? Is gardening something that your child is interested in?
A visit with the Little Hobby Farm was a highlight. There were alpacas, bunnies, guinea pigs, goats, geese and chickens. What was your child’s favourite animal? Did your child notice anything about that animal's behaviour with people or with other animals? Something funny happened with an alpaca at the end of the session. Ask your child about it?
Our nature friends were very creative. Journaling in notebooks (which is a memory book to take home), flower art at the garden, creating with clay, drawing murals, creating songs (Together we’re Stronger by Snow Leopard and Otter), nature’s potions and new games.
Throughout the week, we used our ‘owl eyes’ to see and observe our surroundings. We also used our ‘deer ears’ to listen to each other and to the natural and sometimes unnatural sounds. Finally, using our ‘raccoon hands’ we were able to touch and feel all the different types of textures found in nature. All of these ‘tools’ are with us every single day. Does your child have a favourite ‘tool’ to use when exploring? Have fun exploring and discovering the world around you nature friends!