Friends of Kootenay Blog

Access stories and photos about the natural and human history of Kootenay National Park and Columbia Valley Includes highlights about the Friends of Kootenay National Park activities and programs.


Junior Naturalist Program Coordinator Report 2019

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2019 was a great year for the Junior Naturalist Program! The program was able to run for three days a week as opposed to the two days a week it ran last year, and as a result, more kids overall were able to attend the program. Although the average number of kids who attended the program each day remained the same as last year at 5 kids per day, the program ran for 24 total days as opposed to 18 days last year, and there were only 2 days without any kids, as opposed to 5 last year. There were also less forest fires this year and no road closures, which undoubtedly were positive factors in the increased numbers of kids.Rates were consistent with the last five years. Another change from last year was that Friends of Kootenay was able to hire Hannah in addition to Samuel and Mataya, so generally there were always at least 3 leaders at all times, which helped to ensure the program ran more smoothly.

As with every year, some great new activity ideas were put into action! We actually had a few really rainy days for a change, so we were finally able to try out doing rain splatter paintings, where the kids cover a paper in food coloring drops, then hold their paper in the rain (or under a tree branch that a leader shakes), which turns the drops into beautiful splatter art. We also played a wildlife facts trivia game with game cards and was a great educational addition to the program that the kids would get really into because of the competitive aspect. We always try to make sure to do at least a couple educational activities per session, but it can be hard to come up with new teaching ideas that also seem fun and informal.

Thank you so much to all the kids who participated in our program in 2019 and we look forward to summer this year to start the educational fun again! 

 - Amita Symons-Yu