Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Honey and Harvest

Wednesday, October 12th was a bright, sunny, perfect fall day. Will, Lindsay and I woke with excitement as we anticipated Mr. Fords' class arrival. The bus rolled into the Honeybee research facility with a load of excited Grade 4 students.

Upon meeting Paul at the facility, we were blown away by his knowledge of Honeybees and his ability to appeal to the kids' interest. The room filled with "Oohs" and "Aahs" as he buzzed around speaking about the duties of bees and the huge role they play in our everyday life.

For some of the students, they pushed their limits to feel safe around the bees, which challenged them on a personal level. It also involved a bit of quick-thinking on our part to find alternatives for the kids that weren't comfortable with the situation. 

After learning lots about the anatomy, responsibilities, and importance of honey bees, we re-boarded the bus and headed for the gardens.

 Will went ahead to prepare everything with our wonderful gardener, Martha Gaye, while Lindsay and I played some 'review' games with the kids and got them excited for the next part of the visit. A short bus ride and lots of laughs brought us to the University's on-campus organic gardens (the Guelph Centre for Urban Organic Farming). The weather, being pleasantly cooperative, showed a beautiful array of vegetables, herbs, flowers, and trees.

At the gardens, the kids were given a tour of the property, and explained some fun facts about the different types of plants. They were very engaged in the process!
After the tour, they were given the opportunity to harvest 2 wheel barrows full of butternut squash out in one the fields. This was an amazing hands-on learning opportunity for them because it taught they could see and feel where the food comes from, and make a conscious effort to be a part of that process.
Will was a big fan of the squash as well!
As the afternoon was coming to an end, we took some fun pictures with the class, and sent them home with a brand new "Garden to Table" shirt so they could remember their experience- and hopefully share it with others.

The day was a great success, and we're ready to gear up for the next one!

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