Teeterville Public School students recently became more aware of the wonders of the natural world and their role in preserving it, without leaving their own backyard.
The area is home to the Teeterville wetland pond complex, a 400-acre ecosystem which is overseen by the Long Point Region Conservation Authority. Greg Deyne, retired biologist with the Ministry of Natural Resources, has organized a team of volunteers dedicated to sharing their knowledge of the Teeterville wetland, and the factors that endanger its survival. On a recent visit to the school, the group brought students up close and personal with this important natural resource.
“Our students got to experience the great biodiversity in our wetland, and learned to appreciate their local environment that much more,” said Ian Summers, Prinicipal at Teeterville Public School, of the recent visit. “They also learned about how human activity is impacting this important ecological area, and how they can help protect it.”
Every student, from Kindergarten to Grade 8, had the opportunity to participate in an interactive presentation focused on local plants and wildlife. They also learned how they can become more effective stewards to the environment around them as they learned about conservation measures. Junior and Intermediate students then took the short walk to experience the wetland firsthand. There they witnessed the flight of a bald eagle, a swimming muskrat, a grazing egret, as well as countless other water fowl, fish, and plant species.
“The focus of this community partnership was to foster an appreciation of nature, to develop a better understanding of our local environment, and to advocate for the importance of environmental issues,” said Summers. “Our students were active participants in their own learning as they handled furs from local animals, learned how to take impactful nature photos, and increased their understanding of local ecology.”
Community and Environment are both key parts of Grand Erie’s Multi-Year Plan. The plan aims to improve energy and environmental conservation at its sites, and also to foster and celebrate the community partners who richly enhance the learning experiences of students.
“Teeterville is a small, tight-knit community, and having the opportunity to work with local citizens on something as important as this is special to all of us,” said Summers. “A big thank you to the Teeterville Wetland Conservation group for this fantastic learning opportunity and community partnership. We learned a little bit more about the beauty of Norfolk County and our students are better off for it! I am quite certain every student left this experience with a greater appreciation of their local environment.”