Grouse Mountain Field Trip

The field trip to Grouse Mountain was PHENOMENAL despite the constant downpour of rain throughout the day!  (Many kudos to our stalwart parents and volunteers who braved the wet weather!)

After a long bus ride we arrived at the Grouse Mountain Tram.  It was exciting to all squash into the Skyride tram and head up to the Alpine Station. We could feel the swaying, bumps, and shakes as we headed up the Mountain, but it was so rainy and foggy that we couldn’t actually see how high we were!  Our morning was spent in an authentic Pacific Northwest Coast Longhouse, where we both watched and participated in, the educational Hiwus Presentation (First Nations Cultural Experience) led by an elder of the Squamish Nation. We learned about the ancient customs, legends, dances and rich history of our First nation people. We listened to singing and drumming, and got to do our own “Raven Dance”!

During the lunch hour we watched the Lumberjack Show.  The Lumberjacks didn’t worry too much about falling in the water for the log rolling competition, because they were already soaking wet!  They were really funny! Fortunately, after the show we were able to eat our lunches inside where it was dry and warm.

The afternoon was spent learning about the similarities and differences between the three species of North American bears.  The videos were wonderful!  Then we got to explore different tables of artifacts.  We had to sort out skulls, claws, and footprints to match them up with the correct animal.  All the parents were put to work at the tables, so we didn’t get any photos… too bad!  We also got to see the orphaned Grizzly bears as they wandered through their enclosure.  Wow, they were SO BIG!


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What was YOUR favourite part of the day?



Valentine “Yee-Haa” Dance Fest

It was a true Cowboy Valentine’s Day, complete with the hats, boots, swirly skirts, and some old-fashioned square dancing in the gym!  After weeks of practicing our steps, we were finally ready to give those heel-and-toe dances our best shot.  Not only did we do the easy dances, but we also did our own versions of “Oh Johnny“, “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown“, “Hi Lee Hi Low“, and “Gentle on My Mind“.   We did circle right and left, single file, swing, allemande, promenade, do-sa-do, star in the middle and MORE!

The last two dances are Nestor favourites… the chicken dance and the macarena!  Thank goodness it was almost lunchtime when we finished.  After a few liters of water, we were glad to tuck into our fabulous “friendship fruit salad“.  The pink Strawberry ice cream was a coooool delight as well!  At the end of the day, we took our near-to-bursting Valentine Pocket Garden off the wall so that we could open up all those Valentines we collected!

Yee-Haa… there may be a few tired cowboys and cowgirls tonight!


Dance Fest – Square Dancing from Nora Boekhout on Vimeo.

Dance Fest – Fun Dances from Nora Boekhout on Vimeo.


Which was your favourite dance?

What was the prettiest, funniest, or sweetest  Valentine
that YOU received? 



The Maple Man… La Grande Coulée

We had such a special treat today…
the “Maple Man” came to perform at our school! 

It was a real coincidence in timing, because Mrs. Boekhout and Monty Moose had just come back from their very first (but very short) trip to Quebec.  (They didn’t get to see a Maple farm, but they did get to go dogsledding!  That, however, will be in ANOTHER post!)

The Maple Man, René Turmel, is a third generation “Maple Sugar” producer.  His Maple tree grove is in Sainte-Marie de Beauce, near Quebec City, Quebec but most of the year he lives in the Okanagan Valley, BC.  He travels across Canada sharing some of the traditions and history of French Canadians

Watch our video to see some of the wonderful learning from this session:


The Maple Man Video 

 Have you ever eaten “Le tire” (Maple Taffy)?
Has the Maple Man ever been to your school?

Here are some videos of us “in action” with the Maple Man!

1. It was fun learning how sticks and spoons can make rhythms and music!

Maple Man Music

2.  We also learned some fancy dance steps from a wooden puppet!

Maple Man Dancing

3. Finally, we got to see the making of “le tire” and EAT SOME! Yum!

Maple Man Taffy

Which instrument would you like to play the most…
the spoons,  the fiddle,  or  the accordian?