Holly Zurak photos                                Big Lake Elementary School students work with members of the Williams Lake Community Forest in the wilderness surrounding the school earlier this month.

Holly Zurak photos Big Lake Elementary School students work with members of the Williams Lake Community Forest in the wilderness surrounding the school earlier this month.

Big Lake elementary goes ‘wild’

Elementary school gets application to be a “Wild School” for the 2018-2019 school year approved

Big Lake Elementary School is going wild.

The elementary school has just had their application to be a “Wild School” for the 2018-2019 school year approved by the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation.

The Wild Schools program is a free, whole-school, three year initiative for K-9 schools to support outdoor and place-based learning. This interdisciplinary, curriculum-linked program helps school communities to increase ecological literacy, outdoor field experiences and to build connections in conservation in the community.

Through hands-on environmental learning and experiences, students are engaged through a process of wondering, inquiring, learning and doing. Wild Schools have the opportunity to develop stewardship practices, on-going outdoor learning, community partnerships and support students in becoming environmentally responsible citizens.

“Big Lake has already been focused on nature education and we are so excited about this opportunity,” said principal Holly Zurak.

“We are already in the planning stages of expanding our outdoor learning spaces and are looking into building an outdoor classroom. We are situated in a beautiful space right between lake front and forest’s edge and we’re decked out with outdoor education equipment we were able to purchase with a GO Grant (Get Outside) we received this year from Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation for $3,000. This helped pay for busing to nature trips, nature facilitators, and equipment that we used to fill up GO bags (backpacks) that we purchased from Red Shred’s.

“Our kids are so excited!”

On May 2 the school had a visit from the Distance Education Intermediate Class and their teacher, Bev, as well as three student teachers from UBC who are currently in “alternative education” practicums.

Hugh Flinton, manager of the Williams Lake Community Forest, along with his summer employees, led the school’s two intermediate classes through three rotations: plants, trees and wildlife.

All three rotations headed out from Big Lake Elementary, which is bordered by forest and lakefront.

“The students enjoyed interacting with nature and learning more about our forest,” Zurak said. “This was place-based learning at its best.”

Before the end of the month, the school will host the Nature Kindergarten class and the Grade 7 Outdoor Academy to tour the community forest from Big Lake Elementary, as well.

Then in June, we will host a graduate teacher from UBC, who is currently studying at the Gavin Lake Forest Education Center.

“We are pleased about our blooming relationship and look forward being a hub for nature learning and outdoor education in our school district in the years to come,” Zurak said.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Big Lake elementary goes ‘wild’

Big Lake elementary goes ‘wild’

Big Lake elementary goes ‘wild’

Just Posted

A vial of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is displayed on Jan. 5, in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Rick Bowmer/AP)
Power outage spoils COVID-19 vaccine at Tl’etinqox

Temperature-sensitive vaccine no longer viable after Jan. 18 event

Chief Leah Stump communicated the state of emergency news through a Facebook video. (Video Screenshot)
Nazko First Nation goes into COVID-19 lockdown

Chief Leah Stump said in a video they will be putting up checkpoints before entering the reserve

Canim Lake Band remains in lockdown. (Martina Dopf photo - 100 Mile Free Press).
Canim Lake Band loses Elder due to COVID-19

Community is devastated, Chief Helen Henderson says.

Tl’etinqox will be going into lockdown at 6 p.m. Jan 20 due to COVID-19. (Rebecca Dyok photo)
House parties, impending lockdown and loss; Tl’etinqox chief grapples with COVID-19 challenges

Tl’etinqox Government west of Williams Lake declared a state of emergency Jan. 18

Cariboo Chilcotin MLA Lorne Doerkson told city council Tuesday, Jan. 19, there have been no further cases of COVID-19 amongst the staff at Cariboo Memorial Hospital than the 10 nurses and two doctors who are off work.  (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Cariboo Chilcotin MLA expects health authority to declare COVID-19 cluster for region

Lorne Doerkson updates Williams Lake city council at committee of the whole meeting

A woman writes a message on a memorial mural wall by street artist James “Smokey Devil” Hardy during a memorial to remember victims of illicit drug overdose deaths on International Overdose Awareness Day, in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, on Monday, August 31, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. paramedics respond to record-breaking number of overdose calls in 2020

On the front lines, COVID-19 has not only led to more calls, but increased the complexity

Southern resident killer whales in B.C. waters. Research shows the population’s females are more negatively influenced by vessel traffic than males. (Photo supplied by Ocean Wise Conservation Association)
Female orcas less likely to feed in presence of vessel traffic: study

Research the southern resident population raises concerns over reproduction capacity

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

(Black Press Media files)
Transport Canada not budging on enclosed deck rules, despite calls from BC Ferries union

There have been at least 23 cases of the U.K. variant detected in Canada, four of which are in B.C.

The Elk Valley Hospital is adapting to meet the needs of patients in the Elk Valley.
One in five tests in Fernie area coming back positive: doctor

Dr Ron Clark of Elk Valley Hospital said one in five tests was returning positive for COVID-19

Throughout December, RCMP conducted CounterAttack road checks as police worked to keep roads free of impaired drivers. (BLACK PRESS file photo)
From the “You can’t make this stuff up” file – stories from the BC CounterAttack campaign

Amusing, yes, but a reminder impaired driving affects ability to drive and to make good decisions

(Thesendboys/Instagram)
Video of man doing backflip off Vancouver bridge draws police condemnation

Group says in Instagram story that they ‘don’t do it for the clout’

Inspection of bridge crossing on a B.C. forest service road. (B.C. Forest Practices Board)
B.C. falling behind in maintenance of forest service roads

Auditor finds nearly half of bridges overdue for repair

(Black Press Media files)
Woman steals bottles of wine after brandishing stun baton in New Westminster

Police say the female suspect was wearing a beige trench coat with fur lining

Most Read