Grant Stories

Friends of Wascana Marsh

June 26, 2023
The WOW School Day is organized by the Provincial Capital Commission. It was held at the Habitat Conservation Area in Wascana Centre, Regina on Friday, May 26, from 10:00 to 2:00. Various organizations were asked to provide nature-related stations for the children – Friends of Wascana Marsh was one of those organizations.

Six schools from Regina were involved with from 20 to 25 children from each school. Schools rotated among the various stations. It was difficult to determine the exact age of students, teachers and chaperones, but the students were mostly from grades four and five, making them likely from ages 9 to 11, we assume. Similarly, it was hard to know for sure which children were First Nations/Metis and which were new Canadians, although some certainly appeared to be from both groups.
Friends of Wascana Marsh (FoWM) provided a pond-dipping station – the station was ‘manned’ by volunteers from FoWM. Using water we got from the nearby marsh, we had small and large nets, magnifying glasses and identification sheets for students and chaperones to observe the incredible biodiversity in the marsh. We also explained for each group why these creatures were important to the overall eco-system i.e. some eat mosquitoes, some provide food for fish, etc. It seemed to be a popular program and students, although initially reluctant to touch things, became quite involved by the end of their hour at the station. Students found snails, predacious diving beetles (both adults and larvae), dragonfly larvae, mosquito larvae and fresh-water shrimp, among other creatures.
Although it was a somewhat wet and cold day, students seemed to enjoy the activity once they got past their initial reluctance to touch weeds or marsh critters.