In his nature
With passion for teaching kids, Eric Edward happy at Macphail Woods
Eric Edward is having a busy summer.
As the environmental educator at Macphail Woods, he’s leading kids’ camps, Sharing A Love of Nature.
He is also overseeing Restore an Acre, a forest restoration project that is making improvements on a 220-acre forest on the Selkirk Road, thanks to public funding campaign. Although it’s a juggling act, at times, he wouldn’t change it. It’s important to do restoration work.
“We’re fitting it into the schedule this summer so we can get into the woods and do the work we promised to do,” says Edward, adding the fundraising campaign has, so far, received $16,000.
It’s equally important to teach kids about nature, because everyone is reliant upon it.
“We’re part of the eco system and it’s really important that kids understand where we fit into that. And how the decisions that they make as they go forth in life can have positive or negative effects.”
So, with the help of others, Edward has been running weeklong camps for young environmentalists. Last Thursday the theme was tracking.
“We started the day getting the kids to think about animals and their homes. The we did a presentation on tracking followed by a tracking hike.”
After that, they looked for owl pellets and tracked Big Foot — a staff member in costume — in the woods.
“We just want kids to have a comfortable experience and feel like they can engage in nature positively through their lives.” What does he like best? “It’s learning with the kids. Every year we see the seasons differently. And every time we go outside there’s something new to see. And that’s definitely my favourite part.”
Eric Edward, environmental educator at Macphail Woods, poses with a group of youngsters who recently participated in a kids’ camp called Sharing A Love of Nature.
Eric Edward works on a forest restoration project on 220 acres on the Selkirk Road.