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Organic Connections

How can we feed 11 BILLION people by the end of the century??

ELEVEN book imageWinner of the Saskatchewan Book Award: The University of Saskatchewan President's Office 2015 Award for Non-Fiction, Paul Hanley’s book ELEVEN seek to answer this question, and talks about the important role organics will play as we prepare for mind-boggling number.

 

Join us October 29 at the Royal Saskatchewan Musem for an invigorating evening with Paul Hanley and a Wine & Cheese by Chef Mariana Brito.

Learn more about the event

Background

The Third Organic Connections Student Awareness Project will be held September 26, 2013 at the Saskatchewan Science Centre in Regina. This year the Organic Connections board and our many sponosors would like to get our youth involved with a Field Day as part of an Organic School Project for Middle Years Classrooms.

How does it work?

This project will involve students from approximately four to five classrooms. The project will be part of National Organic Week which takes place September 21 – 28th. The Field trip is just part of the project but probably the most hands on part. Teachers have been asked to utilize a unit developed by the Food Miles Committee of the Saskatchewan Organic Directorate in the educators section of the following site. Please look for Middle years units - http://foodmiles.saskorganic.com/

The focus of this unit is to create awareness about our food, its quality and the choices we make and the environmental impact of importing 90% of our foods from outside of Canada. This unit was developed to correlate with outcomes listed in the Saskatchewan Middle Years curriculum. Students and teachers will participate in several activities and will answer such questions as how and why to grow sprouts, what’s on a label, why do we need bees, what happens in the soil, why are trees important for the environment, can you really determine if there is chemical residue on our grain, how can I plant a seed and make it grow or what difference does it make if a plant has a high sugar content. They will also enjoy a great sampling of organic snacking foods as Chef Rob Harrison from Rushton’s Catering serves them up a set of local organic treats.

What a way to celebrate Organic Week!

To discuss this project or for more information please contact Trina Waronek at 306-476-2058/ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Marion McBride in Regina at 306-543-8732 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. At this time classes are booked for the day and students are getting background information to make the most of the Field Trip.
For more information on the unit used during the six week classroom study please visit http://foodmiles.saskorganic.com/resources/MIDDLE-years-UNIT-ONE.pdf



Organic School Project for Middle Years Classrooms
Field Trip to the Saskatchewan Science Centre
September 26, 2013

The day will begin with all students gathered together for a welcoming and a quick explanation of the day ahead. Students will then participate in a hands on activity and discussion led by Dag Falk of Nature`s Path. Dag will explain to the students the importance of healthy soil for the production of good quality food. He will lead the students through the steps of preparing soil to plant a seed. In the end, each student will have a potted seed to take home with them. The students will then separate into groups to travel through the rest of the stations which include:

Learning about Sprouts

Curriculum outcomes:

  • USC7.5: Evaluate personal food choices and needs by applying accurate and current nutritional knowledge.
  • USC8.6: Examine and assess the concept of sustainability from many perspectives and develop an understanding of its implications for the well-being of self, others and the environment.


Students will be introduced to sprouts and learn what their benefits are, how they are grown, and ways to incorporate them into meals. They will have the opportunity to visit a display of sprouts in different stages of growth. Students will be provided with organic seeds and the items necessary to sprout the seeds at home. The students will be shown the basic steps of sprouting the seeds at this station. Students will leave with their equipment, seeds and the directions they need to follow at home to begin the sprouting process.


Honey Bee Station

Curriculum outcomes:

  • DL6.4: Examine and describe structures and behaviours that help: individual living organisms survive in their environments in the short term; species of living organisms adapt to their environments in the long term.
  • IE7.4: Analyze how ecosystems change in response to natural and human influences, and propose actions to reduce the impact of human behaviour on a specific ecosystem.
  • USC8.6: Examine and assess the concept of sustainability from many perspectives, and develop an understanding of its implications for the well-being of self, others, and the environment.

The students will visit the Pollinators display and listen to a speaker explain about bees and the role they play in feeding the world.  They will also discuss the decline in the honey bee population and possible theories as to why this is happening. 


Create a Worm Compost Bin

Curriculum outcomes:

  • DL6.5: Assess effects of micro-organisms on past and present society, and contributions of science and technology to human understanding of micro-organisms.
  • IE7.4: Analyze how ecosystems change in response to natural and human influences, and propose actions to reduce the impact of human behaviour on a specific ecosystem.
  • RW8.3: Critique the approaches of Canada and Canadians to environmental stewardship and sustainability.

In this station the students will visit the Vermicomposting display and discuss the value of vermicomposting.


Soil Critters

Curriculum outcomes:

  • DL6.1 Recognize, describe and appreciate the diversity of living things in local and other ecosystems.
  • DL6.5: Assess effects of micro-organisms on past and present society, and contributions of science and technology to human understanding of micro-organisms.
  • IE7.3: Evaluate biogeochemical cycles (water, carbon and nitrogen) as representations of energy flow and the cycling of matter through ecosystems.
  • IE7.4: Analyze how ecosystems change in response to natural and human influences, and propose actions to reduce the impact of human behaviour on a specific ecosystem.

Students will visit several displays at the Science Center and discuss the importance of critters in our soil. They will talk about the role they play in maintaining the health of the soil and the formation of humus.


Make an Organic Snack

Curriculum outcomes:

  • USC7.5: Evaluate personal food choices and needs by applying accurate and current nutritional knowledge.
  • RW8.2: Assess the implications of personal consumer choices.
  • RW6.2: Contribute to initiating and guiding change in local and global communities regarding environmental, social, and economic sustainability.

The students will be provided with ingredients to make their own healthy, organic snack.


Read the Label

Curriculum Outcomes:

  • RW6.2: Contribute to initiating and guiding change in local and global communities regarding environmental, social, and economic sustainability.
  • USC7.5: Evaluate personal food choices and needs by applying accurate and current nutritional knowledge.
  • RW8.2: Assess the implications of personal consumer choices.
  • USC8.6: Examine and assess the concept of sustainability from many perspectives, and develop an understanding of its implications for the well-being of self, others, and the environment.

Students will be provided with examples of popular non-organic snack items such as chips, yogurts, pop, cereals, granola bars and chocolate bars. Similar organic items will also be provided. Students will review the ingredients of each and learn about the nutritional value of food they are snacking on. They will learn the importance of reading the label. The students will leave the station with fact sheets that contain information on their popular foods.


Soil Conservation through the use of trees

Curriculum outcomes:

  • RW6.2: Contribute to initiating and guiding change in local and global communities regarding environmental, social, and economic sustainability.
  • IE7.3: Evaluate biogeochemical cycles (water, carbon and nitrogen) as representations of energy flow and the cycling of matter through ecosystems.
  • IE7.4: Analyze how ecosystems change in response to natural and human influences, and propose actions to reduce the impact of human behaviour on a specific ecosystem.
  • RW8.3: Critique the approaches of Canada and Canadians to environmental stewardship and sustainability.

Students will be involved in a discussion of the importance of soil conservation. They will learn of different practices used to conserve the soil and how they affect the quality of the soil for growing crops.


HerbicideResidue on Grain

Curriculum Outcomes:

  • IE7.4: Analyze how ecosystems change in response to natural and human influences, and propose actions to reduce the impact of human behaviour on a specific ecosystem.
  • USC7.5: Evaluate personal food choices and needs by applying accurate and current nutritional knowledge.
  • RW8.2: Assess the implications of personal consumer choices.

The students will visit the ``Its Organic`` display and discuss what is involved producing organic crops, food, and livestock. The students will then observe as a testing machine determines the residue on grains. A discussion regarding this will be held.


Brix Testing

Curriculum Outcomes:

  • IE7.4: Analyze how ecosystems change in response to natural and human influences, and propose actions to reduce the impact of human behaviour on a specific ecosystem.
  • USC8.6: Examine and assess the concept of sustainability from many perspectives, and develop an understanding of the implications for the well-being of self, others, and the environment.

The students will use a spectrometer to test sugar content in various leaves, fruits and vegetables and determine how this works to repel insects, protect from frost, etc. They will also observe the differences in readings between organic and non-organic items.


Science Centre Free Time

Curriculum Outcomes:

This will incorporate several of the curriculum outcomes already suggested as the students will have access to a variety of information throughout the Science Centre.
Students will travel in groups throughout the Science Centre to explore.

 

The day will end with all participants gathered together for a concluding activity which will test their knowledge gained throughout the day. Following this, the students will have time to gather their belongings and items collected throughout the day and return home by bus.

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