The Greater Victoria School District is partnering with Eagle Wing Tours and the Royal BC Museum to offer students in grades four to eight a unique learning opportunity to study the Salish Sea. Through the new program offering, “Exploring The Salish Sea”, middle school students are examining the history, culture and the environment of the Salish Sea.
From the classroom to the water, this initiative is designed to incorporate the curriculum while connecting students to place through experimental learning. The program involves a marine biologist visiting the classroom to teach students about the various connections between the land and the watershed. Lesson plans in the classroom include the Salish people’s perspective, biological aspects, and our current cultural perspectives, including sustainability and local tourism. The second part of the program takes students onto an Eagle Wing catamaran and into the Strait of Georgia, all the way down to Puget Sound, to offer students an outdoor learning experience that has them meaningfully connecting with local nature.
“We are thrilled to be establishing partnerships in the community that provide our students with memorable learning experiences,” shared Board Chair Jordan Watters. “We know that immersive learning opportunities like this offer students new perspectives as well as improve their focus and knowledge retention. We are always striving to enhance the student’s learning experience.”
After the on water activity, students reconnect in the classroom and on school grounds to reflect on the experience. Following the inquiry-based learning model, where students pose questions, problems or scenarios to further explore, they take their experiences back to the classroom and propose bigger questions about the Salish Sea. Their questions and findings will be turned into projects that will be put on display at an open house at the Royal BC Museum. The ‘Celebration of Learning’ at the Royal BC Museum will take place on April 17, 2019.
The Exploring The Salish Sea program launched this school year. Due to popularity, the program will be expanding in the 2019-20 school year.