onaabani-giizis 2017

Here we are at our last full weekend of camp in March for the 2016-2017 school year. Time flies when you are having fun!

This weekend was jammed paced with lots of different subjects of learning. The students started off with a presentation by Mr. Thomas Howes, who is the natural resource manager for FDL. He taught them about the St. Louis River estuary and the clean-up being done from the pollution that was left there in the early to mid-1900, before environmental laws were put into place. They were also taught about the program going on for the restoration of wild rice lakes in the area. In 2015 there was a total of 161 acres that were cut and reseeded with manoomin (wild rice). This is being done with the hopes of restoring our wild rice lakes back to the way they used to be so the harvests can be much more productive.

Our evening ended with splitting the students into two groups and they were each given the same Lock Box activity and competed against each other. The Lock Box “game” is an activity where the students are working on their creative, and critical thinking skills, not to mention working as a team, communication, and problem solving.  It is an activity that gives the students several different clues to solve in order to open locks on boxes, each new lock opened leads them to new questions to puzzles that they must unravel to open the next box. The students really enjoy doing this activity and it is an awesome bonding experience for them.

Saturday was another very busy day, with a visit to the Great Lakes  Aquarium, where the trip was highlighted with the opportunity for us to learn many interesting facts about Lake Sturgeons and actually touch them as they swam around in the touch tank. After returning back to camp the students did a little art, by drawing a detailed drawing of an animal that they saw at the aquarium.  Next we were on to a new topic, “The Art of Entomophagy” which is the practice of eating insects. The students learned that with climate change and the dangers of the greenhouse effect that many places around the world are looking to new sources of proteins for the human diet. Methane gas is the #2 most abundant greenhouse gas on our planet. A lot of this is produced by the animals we raise to be able to consume. Insects may be an excellent alternative to this problem.  Ms. Leslie made bars with cricket flour, and brought an assortment of flavored insects for everyone to try.

Our evening ended with an engineering challenge that the students were split into groups and competed against one another. They were asked to design and construct a vehicle that could be moved by the force of rubber bands. Some very creative designs were made and lots of cheering and laughter were heard. March camp was a very eventful one, and the students were all excited to learn all about the new subjects.

Climate Change, Culture, Engineering, History, Ojibwe language, Oral Traditions, Science, Seasonal camp