Literacy Connections – Stoney Creek Place-Based Learning

Literacy Connections

Literacy Connections

The outdoor classroom is the perfect setting for story books. All Creations Represented: A child’s guide to the Medicine Wheel has been read to all students to teach the four directions and the many facets of the wheel.

  • Demonstrate an awareness of the oral tradition in First People’s cultures and the purpose of story
  • Identify how story in First Peoples cultures connects people and land
  • Show awareness of how story in First Peoples cultures connects people to family and community

Taan’s Moons— Seasonal Rounds

Most Primary students have experienced a seasonal rounds lessons which included looking at 4 seasons as four quarters of the circle in the outdoor classroom. The story of Taan, is told in the outdoor class, with the teacher playing the bear who walks around the circle. The teacher begins in winter when bear is hibernating and walks around the cirlce which is a symbol fro the year with four seasons and all twelve months. We discuss hunting, fishing, and gathering plants like berries as common threads between the bear and many people. We also discuss preservation of food to have it last through the winter. Students are provided the opportunity to taste smoked salmon, air dried salmon from Lilloeet, frozen blueberries and apple fruit leather. This is exciting and fun for the students. Please see the post asking How does you family preserve food? and add a comment.

Solomon’s Tree – Products from trees & Culture Connections

Most primary students have taken a walk to view a “grandmother maple tree” around the Stoney Creek Forest. The story of Solomon’s Tree allows for students to develop an understanding of habitat because the tree creates homes for hummingbirds and butterflies in the story. Further to that the children can view the moss and the licorice ferns in the tree’s big limbs. These organisms are considered food and medicine. The story is about a tree that Solomon loves, but it falls over during a winter storm. His uncle carves a mask from one piece of the tree and paints a hummingbird on the mask. Several activities such as paper mask making, writing and collecting maple seeds for planting or crafts are included.

Songs and Dancing

The Kindergarten classes have been presented with a variety of texts such as the Watershed Cape and Hat that teach about the water cycle and the salmon life cycle. Students have also been part of embodiment lessons where they follow the salmon life cycle through movement and directions provided by the outdoor educator. Please click on the blog post with a photo of the Salmon Life Cycle for a quick video of this journey that leads students as salmon from Stoney Creek, to the Brunette River, onward to the Fraser River and out to the Pacific Ocean … and back again.

The Dipper Dance

This fall the kindergarten class learned about the dipper which eats invertebrates and salmon eggs when spawning occurs on the creek. This bird has an extra eyelid for underwater viewing and the children mimic this attribute by pretending to put on goggles before they dip down in search of invertebrates. stirred up by salmon creating nests for their eggs by swishing their powerful tails in the creekbed. Moving and singing provide alternative texts for children to learn from and it works very well outdoors.

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