Wednesday, October 20 was CGS’ first Take Me Outside Day. We were excited to join 350,000 students across the province for outdoor education to honour Indigenous culture. We started the day with our Land Acknowledgment. Acknowledgements are a way for non-Indigenous Canadians to recognize that these lands are the traditional territories of Indigenous people in Canada. Indigenous people have been living on Turtle Island, the lands now called Canada for thousands of years. There were many Indigenous cultures across the continent and over 300 languages were spoken! Now, we are learning much more about Indigenous Peoples in Canada. ‘Take Me Outside Day’ was another way in which we can respect and observe the Indigenous Peoples connection to the land.
The Early Starts had so much fun gathering nature this morning for “Take Me Outside Day”. They walked around the playground looking for different parts of nature. After coming back into the classroom, they look at what they found with magnifying glasses. Early Starts learned that we are on Indigenous land and we need to make sure we keep the land safe and clean!
The JK’s read the book Shi-Shi-etko. Shi-Shi-etko is soon leaving her home to attend a residential school. She spends her last days at home treasuring and appreciating the beauty of her world — the dancing sunlight, the tall grass, each shiny rock, the tadpoles in the creek, her grandfather’s paddle song. Her mother, father, and grandmother, each in turn, share valuable teachings that they want her to remember. Shi-shi-etko carefully gathers her memories for safekeeping.
The JK’s spent some of the morning doing a nature walk taking in the beautiful clouds and surroundings. Their special walk in the area around CGS brought them to a class members front lawn which provided a fantastic backdrop for a group photo. The JK’s collected sticks so that they could create some beautiful illustrations using the collected sticks as the paintbrush.
The SK class took time outside to learn about and investigate for spiders in the CGS surrounding area.
The Grade One’s went outside to read ‘Nibi’s Water Song’, a wonderful children’s book about an Indigenous girl named Nibi who is on the search for clean water to drink. Though faced with repeated obstacles, Nibi’s joyful and determined energy is a catalyst for change and action as her community, country and government rally around her to make clean drinking water available for all. They discussed the importance of water and how we should not waste this precious resource. Many of the children were surprised to learn that there are children in Canada who still don’t have clean drinking water.
Afterwards, the class was challenged to a Mathematical Nature Hunt using their knowledge of patterning, shapes, measurement and numbers. They learned about the many mathematical wonders all around, if only we take the time to look around! (tying in our 5 senses unit in Science).
The Grade 2 class took to the outdoors to collect Fall leaves from the surrounding area. Once back in class they used their collection to make some beautiful pieces for display outside of the CGS School office.
The Grade 3&4 class participated in a virtual guided yoga class with Satya Yoga. They then took in a virtual ‘Strong Nations’ session with author Celeste Aleck telling the story ‘Taking Care of Our Mother Earth’ finished off ‘Take Me Outside Day’ with an Outdoor Scavenger Hunt.