We made it through our first week of inclement weather! Here’s hoping it will be our last. The robins are beginning their return to Peterson Creek, so that’s a happy omen for us. This week we are so grateful for all of our families for working with us and being so understanding about all of the changes. We are also grateful for having resources like the Kamloops United Church and the Kamloops Museum that allow us to continue to run the program even when it’s -32 with the wind chill.
Overall, we are happy to say that this week was a success. The children adapted to the change in environment with admirable resiliency. We built forts and raced matchbox cars. We conducted science experiments, so see how far a plastic ring could roll across the room off of a ramp and what happened when you started adding more rings. Our usual mud kitchen was replaced with an indoor play kitchen but was still a favorite place to play for a number of the children. Many of the children also enjoyed playing with the play dough that Krystal made.
After we sat down for a story and snack, we bundled up and headed outside to the playground at Stuart Woods Elementary. The short walk to the playground helped warm us all up in the chilly weather. The children were ready to get out and enjoy the snow. We were lucky on Monday to get some sunshine but unfortunately it didn’t stick around for the week. The snow was deep enough that crossing the field was a bit of a challenge for some of the smaller children, but it was so much fun! The cold weather meant the snow was too powdery and soft for building. Instead the children made snow angels and took advantage of the playground equipment. Some children also discovered that the snow made a great landing pad and explored jumping off of the stone retaining wall on the edge of the playground.
On Thursday, we decided to take the opportunity to bring the children to the Kamloops Museum. On Thursday, we started the day outside on the playground and even ate our snack in our cozy winter tent. The children did an admirable job managing the weather but it was a sharp reminder of why we limit our time outside when it’s so cold! There were a lot of chilly fingers and toes by the end of snack and we made a quick escape to the warm museum. We spent some time in the bottom of the museum exploring the play area that is set up for children. We dressed up, built fires out of wood blocks and a cabin out of giant Lincoln logs. We read books and played with trains and practiced hula hooping. Near the end of the day, when the children were ready for a more quiet and calm activity, we packed up our things and headed upstairs to the main exhibits. The taxidermy exhibit was such a great opportunity for the children to see up close so many of the animals we talk about at Forest School and many of them were able to spot their nature name. On the top floor we explored some of Kamloops local history. It was very rewarding for us to see the children so engaged and interested in the exhibits. If you haven’t had a chance to take a look, we suggest you do. 🙂
The weather next week is looking significantly warmer, so we will see you all in the park!