Update - February 26th 2017

Hello All,

Welcome back to RTH after our elective program!  Electives were a great success this year.  Students enjoyed their experiences learning how to cross country ski, exploring on snowshoes, and sledding down the steep slopes at Duntroon Highlands.  Learning about maple syrup production, comparing differences to our site, playing in the cedar maze, and discovering nature surprises were additional highlights of our elective program.  Ask your child what nature surprises they observed at Duntroon?  

During our fist week back we experienced and discussed changes in the weather.  The mild temperatures reopened our mud kitchen!  We ventured out on our trails to observe the changes since most of our snow has disappeared.  Wednesdays group was surprised by the fast flowing, 'chocolate milk coloured water'.  We observed erosion on the river banks first hand.  We also continued to make discoveries on the work of a mystery animals that is chopping down river side trees.  We have done some work researching animals that hibernate, and those who do not, to help solve this nature mystery.  We can not find a dam of any sort, so it remains very puzzling?

Our February thaw has also revealed many nature surprises.  Students this week caught sight of... a racoon, some jelly fungus, a toad, and bees laying in the snow.  These discoveries have prompted much excitement and discussion.  Some asked, "why is the racoon out in the day time? What is this!?  Is the toad breathing?  How did it move?  Why are the bees in the snow?  Do bees hibernate?"  These opportunities provide engaging opportunities for inquiry and investigation.

Some groups began to work on projects for our novel study.  Older students will continue to collect natural items to design their dioramas.  We will also continue to read Little House in the Big Woods, and begin to paint and build scenes from the story,  

Cardinal shared information on early settlers and their life on the land this week.  She also shared some true stories through story telling of her mother teaching in a one room school house.  Students were intrigued by how different life was just a few generations back.  Thank you for sharing Cardinal!

We welcomed back Lilly of the Valley this week!  It was great to see Lilly, sing together in the sun, and move to her exciting musical games.  Lilly's time with us is always greatly enjoyed!  

We have continued our yoga routine to end each day at RTH.  We have also made sit-upons to use in the wet conditions.  We think they will be perfect for sit spots in the spring weather.  

Our classroom is looking more and more like an inviting learning environment!  The walls have been painted, and students will be invited to colour our chalkboard wall this week once the paint dries!  The classroom will be a great space to dry off and take a break from the elements as we reflect on our exciting experiences outside!  Thank you Adam Burk, family, and crew from Due North Carpentry! 

Take care,

Shannon