Forest Park School is a school of about 260 students. When you enter our school the first thing you see is a 40 foot long by 10 foot tall mural painted by artist David Belanger and finishing touches were done with Seven Oaks Artist in Residence Lita Fontaine and the students of Forest Park School.
ESD – Sustainability, Nature, Outdoor Gardens
In Room 5 (Mrs. Judge’s 1/2/3 multiage classroom), the importance of food sources, clean water and plant growth have been a year-long focus. The children have studied how using hydroponics leaves a small ecological footprint on our Mother Earth. Hydroponics uses little energy for the plants to grow.
The children have discovered that seeds can be grown as microgreens, which can be eaten after a very short period of growing time. They have grown, monitored and sampled mustard, radish, pea and sunflower microgreens. The students explored the importance of using clean water to create new life. They understand the importance of speaking up against water pollution and believe that everyone in the world has a right to clean, drinkable water.
Lettuce and Basil (in clay beds)
Lettuce and Basil (deep water culture)
In Room 5 and 6 (Mrs. Judge’s and Mrs. Marchenski’s 1/2/3 classrooms), the children are growing tobacco plants which will be tranferred to our outdoor planters in the spring. We also have plans to create a Three Sisters garden in the spring.
Seven Teachings (School-Wide)
The Seven Teachings are represented, through words and art, in numerous classrooms throughout the school.
(In Room 5, Mrs. Judge’s 1/2/3 multiage classroom)
(In Room 8, Mrs. Slessor’s Grade 3 classroom)
Seven Teachings School Assemblies
All classrooms have taken a turn in celebrating and sharing the Seven Teachings at a school assembly. Classrooms used drama, puppets, poems, posters, songs, chants, and powerful messages to share their understanding of the Seven Teachings.
Room 12, Mrs. Dech and Mrs. McNulty’s Grade 4/5 classroom shared Love.
Room 11, Mrs. Tabor and Mr. Allary’s Grade 4/5 classroom shared Honesty.
Room 10, Mr. Gebhardt’s Grade 4/5 classroom shared Humility.
Rooms 3 and 4, Ms Doerksen,Mrs. Erickson and Ms Kowalchuk’s Grade 1/2 classrooms shared Truth.
| (Room 7, Mrs. Prabhakar’s Grade 1/2 classroom and Mrs. Slessor’s Grade 3 classroom share Wisdom)|
| (Room 5 and 6, Mrs. Judge’s and Mrs. Marchenski’s Grade 1/2/3 classrooms share Courage) |
Every day the students in Ms Doerksen’s class host a smudge for all the staff and students in the school and all who wish to join are welcome. Once a student has taken part of the smudge and understands and respects the reason we are smudging, they then are welcomed to lead the smudge by walking around the circle and offering the sage/cedar to the smudge members. We end our smudge with a going away message and the student who is leading the smudge will send everyone off with a positive message to start their day. The most common message is “Have a great day everyone.”
Guest Speakers and CATEP Teacher Candidates
David Boulanger visited early years classrooms to share the drum teachings. He taught the children to sing The Bear Song in Ojibwe. He also spent time in our Grade 4/5 classrooms where he taught the students to build shiishiigans (rattles).
Throughout Forest Park School, art can be seen in a variety of media reflecting on aboriginal perspectives.
(Inukshuk project by Rooms 5 and 6)
(Dreamcatchers by Room 3)
(Tipi project made by Room 3 and 4 classrooms)
Room 3 focused on the Eagle and how it represents Love. They made eagle stained glass art pieces to help and remind us what Love is and how we can show Love.
In the Gymnasium
Phys Ed. Teacher Ms Lukas teaches all the students a variety of aboriginal games as part of her program. She has taught them about hoop dancing formations.
Many field trips are planned to specifically focus on Aboriginal perspectives. These field trips have included: The Forks (snow sculpting, elder teachings, tipi building, sustainability tours, Human Rights Museum, Culture Days), Art Gallery (soapstone carvings and historical connections), Oak Hammock Marsh (sustainability).
| Snow Sculpting at the Forks (Rooms 3 and 4)|
|Storytelling with an elder at the Forks (Rooms 3 and 4) |
|Tipi Designing and Building at the Forks (Rooms 3 and 4) |
Culture Day at the Forks (Rooms 5 and 6)
Storytelling in Central Park on Culture Day (Rooms 5 and 6)
First Nations Resources
We consistently build up our teacher resources and literature to support our work in our classrooms. Here are a few new additions for our teachers and students.
Teacher’s Guide for Seven Teachings
Teacher’s Guide for Grandmother and Grandfather Teachings
| Board Books to support the Grandmother and Grandfather Teachings|
Turtle Island Book Series
Strong Nations Publishing
(Northern and Métis Series)