Marystown stu­dents versed in ducks

Ducks Un­lim­ited makes pre­sen­ta­tion to Sa­cred Heart Acad­emy stu­dents

The Southern Gazette - - Editorial - BY COLIN FAR­RELL MARYSTOWN, N.L Colin.far­rell@south­erngazette.ca

It was a chilly morn­ing for Grade Four and Five stu­dents from Sa­cred Heart Acad­emy as they met at Jane’s Pond in Marystown to learn more about the world of wildlife that sur­rounded them.

Sarah Wilkins, sum­mer na­ture in­ter­preter with Ducks Un­lim­ited Canada, said a num­ber of topics were cov­ered dur­ing the event held on Wed­nes­day, May 30.

“We talked about how to tell the dif­fer­ence be­tween male and fe­male birds, how to use binoc­u­lars and the safest way to use them,” she said. “We also talked about habi­tats. . . (and) talked to the kids about what biomes are.”

The stu­dents also learned about other types of birds and wa­ter fowl in Canada.

Wilkins said stu­dents were in­ter­ested in learn­ing about wet­lands, and were ea­ger to share any knowl­edge they knew on the topic.

“A lot of them al­ready know what bogs are, marshes and ponds,” she said. “They get re­ally ex­cited when you talk about swamps and what types of an­i­mals live in swamps.”

While some of the ac­tiv­i­ties were lis­ten­ing-based, stu­dents also had an op­por­tu­nity to do some hands-on learn­ing, such as col­lect­ing ex­am­ples of in­ver­te­brates from the pond so that they could be iden­ti­fied.

Wilkins also used games to show stu­dents how bats lo­cate food.

Grade 4 stu­dent Brook­lyn Rogers es­pe­cially en­joyed the echolo­ca­tion game, where one stu­dent pre­tends to be a bat and an­other pre­tends to be a moth. The stu­dent picked to be the bat had to close their eyes and try and find the other stu­dent just by fol­low­ing the other stu­dents voice.

“That was re­ally fun — it re­minded me of Marco Polo,” she said.

Wilkins said stu­dents re­tain a lot of in­for­ma­tion through games and ac­tiv­i­ties.

“I think it’s a good way to re­tain it, they al­ways re­mem­ber the games, it’s like sneaky teach­ing,” she said.

Brook­lyn en­joyed the Ducks Un­lim­ited pre­sen­ta­tion. She learned a lot about ducks and what they eat at Jane’s Pond.

“I just thought they ate lit­tle tiny baby fish, but ap­par­ently they eat way more,” she shared with The South­ern Gazette.

PHO­TOS BY COLIN FAR­RELL/THE SOUTH­ERN GAZETTE

Sarah Wilkins of Ducks Un­lim­ited Canada showed stu­dents an ex­am­ple of an in­ver­te­brate dur­ing a pre­sen­ta­tion held at Jane’s Pond on Wed­nes­day, May 30.

Shantel Byrne closely in­spected her net to see if there are any small bugs hid­ing in the wa­ter.

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