It’s easy to celebrate living in a temperate rainforest when the sun is shing through the vast array of greenery and flowers in full bloom. However, it is October in Vancouver and so far the average number of days of rain for the entire month has already been surpassed. I have a thick head of curly hair and it takes a significant downpour to soak through to my scalp. This October is umbrella worthy – even for me.
The biggest challenge during particularly wet weather is attitude. Come to terms with the fact that it is going to rain and that healthy bodies, healthy minds, and inquiring brains need to get outside. This is the time to explore the water cycle, weather systems, animal adaptations, and poetic devices. It provides many opportunities for hands on opportunities building rain gauges, graphing, doing calculations, and making predictions.
I was fortunate to have Dr. Hart Banack and his U.B.C. students come to my school to do shelter building with the interested classes in my school. Since then, I am never without tarps and ropes from Canadian Tire for kids to make shelters on rainy days. Some of them stay up for long periods of time with regular upgrades. It’s a great opportunity for students to work cooperatively to plan the best place for their shelter and learn to tie knows that hold. Although Sailing lessons never taught my husband to sail together, I did learn how to tie some good knots. A few hints. Do not give kids bungy cords. They are quicker but not safe when pulled too hard and released. Nylon rope is great because it’s waterproof, but it is more difficult to tie knots that hold. When kids are making adjustments, try to steer clear of the jettison of water when the tarp is pulled tight
I memorized this poem for my very first Grade 2 class. I’ve had fun with it with students from kindergarten to practicing teachers. The rain provides a fresh perspective and a window into all kinds of learning.
She wants a drink of water,
For it to rain.
Lazy Jane by Shel Silverstein (1974) in Where The Sidewalk Ends.
No need to wait! Get outdoors. Stay dry out there.
Another Wild About Vancouver (WAV) Wednesday Post