Tag Archives: Burgoyne

Students connect with nature during the annual frog watching field trip

In order to live flourishing lives, students must learn the importance of contributing to the community. They must strive to develop meaningful partnerships and connections that will support them throughout their journey. These contributions and connections have a positive impact on everyone and everything around them.

On the evening of Friday, April 22nd, a group of Grade 9 geography students ventured to the Burgoyne Outdoor Education and Research Centre (BOERC). Connecting with their peers and contributing to the restoration of our environment was an important part of this learning experience.

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In partnership with the FrogWatch Ontario Programme, our students participated in a national initiative that allows students to contribute to Environment Canada’s biodiversity database, specifically, data relating to frogs and toads. Coinciding with Earth Day, it was a perfect way to connect with and give back to nature and our community.

During their investigation, the students were asked to record a number of observations and conduct a number of tests. As the summative component of their ‘Amphibians as Bio-indicators’ unit, the students had to record the weather and water conditions, such as wind speed, cloud cover, water quality and temperature. This data was submitted alongside their observations. Ridleians then spent the evening collecting observational data and spent several hours listening for species of frogs and toads that are native to Ontario. Data such as this helps scientists determine positive and negative population trends, range and distribution of species and can help track climate change. It was a perfect night for frog watching and the students collected an abundance of data, which was then sent to Environment Canada where it will be used to help monitor climate change.

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This annual trip allows students to connect with nature, contribute to the community and strengthen partnerships with their classmates. Field trips like this – ones that extend beyond on the classroom and provide an interactive learning experience that connects to a bigger picture – are essential to the Ridley framework.

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Ridleians Find Their Inspiration, En Plein Air

Expression, passion, inspiration; these are three elements that every artist must experience first hand to find their own creative voice. In order to find that voice, it is important for students to embrace the creative world, outside of the classroom.

On Thursday, October 15th, students in grade 9 Visual Arts travelled to the Art Gallery of Hamilton. There they spent the morning on a guided tour, admiring the works in the permanent collection.

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Among the many exhibits, one was of particular interest to the students ­– a multi-media installation exhibit that allowed the students to participate and become “part of” the work. These pieces brought video, light projection, mixed media sculpture and sound into one beautiful installment. This was the first time many of the students had experienced conceptual artwork before.

As the students made their way through the gallery, they had the opportunity to express their own creativity with drawing activities around every corner.

Following the morning gallery visit, students traveled to the Burgoyne Outdoor Education and Research Center (BOERC), for an afternoon of drawing and painting en plein air. “En plein air” is a French expression used that translates to “in open air” and is most often used to describe painting out in nature. Students created colour and texture studies of the beautiful fall foliage and watercolour studies of the landscape.

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This field experience will prepare students for the culmination of our first unit of study, “Perspective in the Landscape.” Thanks to all for an engaging experience!

– Katie Marrone, Department of Visual and Performing Arts