In May, several very successful sessions were held by Nature Quest presenters at King George School in Saskatoon, with the help of funding from SaskOutdoorsand the Outdoor Experience Grant funding.
Nature Quest is developing a strong and positive relationship with King George School, and several years of programming have led to an interest in increasing capacity by adding a school garden. While core funding for the garden project did not materialize this spring, presenters were able to continue working with students to increase their understanding and appreciation of nature and their relationship to the natural world in the wilderness and in their backyard. Two sessions, with presenters John Murray, Jordan Schultz and Bonnie Logan, incorporated photography, music, storytelling and dance. Twenty four students in Helen Vangool’s Grade 5 class participated. The presentations introduced nature, the Boreal Forest, the environment and our connection to the natural world by appealing to the students’ creativity. Through songs, stories and nature photography, students were able to internalize their latent connection to nature, and share their new insights by writing and sharing their own stories and songs.
To enhance the experience, John and Jordan returned and spent two afternoons outdoors with the students, increasing their photography skills and through that, heightening their sense of the nature around them. The students were enthusiastic and engaged, and the homeroom teacher was pleased with the presentations and workshops.
Nature Quest programming is interactive, multimedia and multicultural. Presenters use song, story, photography, spoken word poetry and hip-hop, urban foraging, sustainable gardening, year round camping, First Nations cultural teachings and life skills/work skills in urban and rural settings. Presenters with Nature Quest have been visiting students in the classroom and taking them into the boreal forest and their own back yards to explore nature in a unique and empowering way since 2004.