Monthly Archives: May 2014

Westview Environmental Education Weekend 2014

Westview Environmental Education Weekend 2014

After a good nights sleep in the hogan and a very big breakfast students were ready to begin their day of learning!  The morning consisted of three rotations chicken farming, growing herbs and plants, and canning.

At the chicken farming station students learned from a local poultry farmer and her grand-daughter the ins and outs of keeping chickens.  Students learned about the different types of chicken feed and bedding.  They also learned how to care for chicks and the special precautions that need to be taken with these tiny chickens.  Students were also able to bring home a few eggs!

Herbs and gardening station, here students learned about different types of herbs and how to properly plant them.  Students learned about how plants use their roots to gather water and nutrients and how plants use their leaves in a processes called photosynthesis to produce their own food.  Each group planted a pizza garden full of herbs and a tomato plant.  Students also planted a basil sprout to take home.

 

Another station in the morning rotation was Canning with BES’s very own Mrs. Donovan.  Mrs. Donovan shared with the students her expertise in canning by having the different groups work through the steps of canning strawberry jam.  Early groups mashed strawberries and mixed the ingredients to make the strawberry jam.  Later groups placed jars into the “hot water bath” and removed them.  All students made labels for the strawberry jam that each of them got to take home.  Mrs. Donovan also had some yummy treats for students to try that she had canned in the fall.

After the morning rotations the whole group learned from a Bee keeper.  Our local expert shared his knowledge on bee keeping from the past into the present.  Students learned about proper care of bees and how smoke is used as an aid when harvesting honey.  They also learned about the various tools and practices used in bee keeping.

After the morning presenters students took a lunch break and then got right back into environmental experiences.  One group went fishing while the other group went on a hike and dug for worms for bait.  Students enjoyed all of the wildlife they encountered on our journey.

Before the switch we had a local goat farmer come in to share with the students her experiences in making soap from goat milk.  Students learned about the different goats on their farm and the two llamas they have to protect their herd.  We learned about the lengthy process of making soap and the different materials necessary to create the different types of soap.  After the presentation students were very excited to pick out their own bar of soap!  They enjoyed smelling each one and choosing a favorite.  

The last experience for the day was fishing.  Students were very excited and ready to catch some fish!  Our group had some good luck and lots of patience an we had three successful fishermen.  Mr. and Mrs. O’Connell were our presenters and Mr. O’Connell had safety tips and information to share with students.

Students left for home with many experiences and goodies from their weekend!  A heartfelt THANK YOU goes out to all of our sponsors and presenters who made this trip possible!