Imagine, Explore, Create

Imagine, Explore, Create

Thursday, 18 June 2015

Kindergarten Makes a Splash with Watershed Award!

Each year, students across Canada take on inspirational projects to learn about and educate others on the importance of protecting our environment for future generations. This year, our Douglasdale Kindergarten students embarked on just such an initiative and we are SO PROUD to announce that their efforts have been recognized on a National scale! 

Link to Award

Link to Project Profile

Our DDS Kindergarten students and teachers have just been awarded the 2015 GRAND PRIZE for RBC's - Evergreen Watershed Champions project! CONGRATULATIONS!! 

  1. The students took a Field trip to Bow Habitat Station to observe fish, learn about the fish life cycle and understand that fish call the Bow River home. They also partnered with the Calgary Stream of Dreams team creating a dream stream mural. The fish mural as well as its environmental message to the community is situated on the fence at the front of our school. 

    They also spearheaded an interactive water walk for the entire school population to take part in. During the course of the walk, participants stopped at a variety of different stations (created by the Kindergarten classes) that educated them about water issues and the importance of water conservation. Over $400.00 dollars was raised that day for a clean drinking water initiative in collaboration with our school’s “Me to We” club. They donated the money raised to a developing country’s clean drinking water project.

  1. But their work wasn't done. The students also connected with Trout Unlimited Canada and painted yellow fish symbols and the words, “Rainwater Only” beside storm drains around Douglasdale. They delivered informative brochures door to door that educated households about storm drain pollution and its effects on fish habitat. Another field trip saw the students visit Fish Creek Park to observe first hand how storm drains empty into the Bow River. 

  2. To further deliver their message to the wider community, each Kindergarten student was responsible for enhancing one paper grocery bag, from Planet Organic, with information about water conservation and/or storm drain pollution and it’s effects on our local watershed. The children conveyed their messages through text and drawings. The embellished bags were then returned to Planet Organic (Elbow Drive location) and were handed out to customers on Earth Day!  

    “We need to take care of our river. We are lucky to have it in our city.” ~ age 5

    “All of the storm drains in our city lead to the Bow River. Nothing bad can go down the
    drains. If it does it will kill the fish.” ~ age 5

    “The Bow River is close to our school. It is a little piece of paradise!” ~ age 5 

    “We are really lucky. The water in the Bow River is so clean and fresh. After it is filtered we can drink it easy. We don’t have to worry about water like kids do in Africa.” ~ age 6

    “I saw my neighbour washing his car in his driveway. This is not good! I wanted to tell him to stop because it will hurt the fish in the river, but my Mom doesn’t know him so I can’t go talk to him.”    ~ age 5

    “Only rain down the drain. This is what I learned from the Stream of Dreams.” ~ age 6

    The fact that this remarkable project was carried out by our school's youngest learners demonstrates that young children CAN make a difference in the world. When students are invited to "dive a little deeper" into complex issues, connect with experts in the field, and share their learning with a wider audience, the impact is far-reaching and lasting! 

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

Grade One Leighton Centre Trip

On Monday June 8th the Grade Ones went on a wonderful trip to the Leighton Centre.  What a wonderful day to spend outside enjoying nature!  It was 30 degrees! Sketching, exploring animal antlers, going on a nature hike, learning about Mr. and Mrs. Leighton,  and  creating watercolour trees were a few of the wonderful activities that we enjoyed. 

Some of the children reflected, "We painted a tree and we used acrylic paints. We put water and paint on our paper and then we blew with a straw. They turned into awesome trees. We made a little a picture of the "The red spoon Dairy Queen-asaurus" on sandpaper. Then each one of our pictures was ironed onto one pice of fabric. We went to Echo Hill and made an echo."

  • KS says, "I liked holding the reindeer antlers and teeth!"
  • MT says, "We sang "Let it Grow" to our docent Ms. Jacquie. She liked it very much so she asked us to sing it twice! I liked going outside because I got fresh air."
  • KS says, "We went on a nice walk through the forest. It felt nice and cool."
  • EG says, "I liked being in the forest because you could go into a very good hiding spot like in the high grass."
  • MC says, "We got to go and play in a mini forest."
  • EK says, "I like when we got to eat snack outside on the tables. I wish we could go outside for snack at the Leighton Center every day. You should teach your little brother or sister to do art so it is important for you to learn art too."
  • JR says, "It is important to go outside in nature so that you can learn about nature and pass what you know about art around so that it grows and more people can learn about art."
  • AS says, "It is important to play outside so that you can learn about nature."
  • XK says, It is nice to go outside and enjoy nature."

Monday, 8 June 2015

A Culinary Experience for our Eco Team

On Monday June 8th our Eco Team visited Jackson's Garden at SAIT to culminate a year of hard work educating Douglasdale students and staff about the benefits of paper towel composting. Jackson's Garden is SAIT's culinary garden. The students met with Chef Andrew and his team to learn the ins and outs of edible plants and flowers as well as the amazing world of honey bees.

The morning started with a tour of the garden. The students all tasted a variety of plants including: French Tarragon, Thyme, Mint, Nasturtium, Spearmint, Lemon Balm, Chocolate Mint, Asparagus, Viola Flower, and Begonia Flower. We learned that Stinging Nettle is a superfood, Lemon Balm will ward of mosquitoes, and the Yarrow plant once helped soldiers stop their bleeding wounds.

Next we went up to the rooftop observatory to watch the honey bees at work. We learned that a Queen Bee can lay 1500 eggs in a single summer day and that a bee will fly up to 3km in one direction to find food and still make it back to the hive in time for bed. While up on the roof, we got to dig our spoons right into a fresh, sticky honeycomb and savor the sweet honey in its purest form. What a treat that was!


When we returned to the garden, we visited their worm compost. We were given a mini compost in a bottle to bring back to the school so that we can show the rest of the students how the worms will mess up and turn the tidy layers of soil as they digest the food scraps and make new castings. We were also each given a sunflower seed in a pot to take home and transplant into our own gardens.

There are so many flowers and plants in Jackson's Culinary Garden that each plant needs a sign post. We were so excited to find out that we got to help them paint new posts for this year's plants. While we were busy planting we could smell the wonderful aroma coming from the clay oven. It was coming from our very own Chef Andrew who was busy preparing fresh pizzas for us to top off with our individually selected herbs and flowers. What's that you say? Flowers on a pizza? YES! They were so tasty we just had to make an extra one to take back to school especially for Mr. Wilson. We washed our pizzas down with lots of fresh mint ice tea and then boarded the bus to head back to school.

Mr. Wilson's Edible Garden Pizza

It was a field trip that we won't soon forget!