Grade 8

Cathy Grant

Outreach Education Instructor

905 579-0411 ext. 108


Stream Ecosystems and Communities (2 hours)

Using dip-nets and measuring equipment, students will explore the biotic and abiotic elements and interactions in our dynamic stream ecosystem. They will develop an understanding of the role streams play in a watershed and how plants, animals, insects and people depend on healthy stream systems every day.  By organizing our stream's macroinvertebrates according to their pollution tolerance level, students will gain an understanding of bioindicators.  Factors that affect local water quality including erosion and pollution will be discussed.  Students should come prepared with rubber boots.  In the event of high water, a pond community will be explored instead.     

Curriculum Connections

Science & Technology: Water Systems

Location Options

Heber Down Conservation Area (fall/spring)

Coyote Cache Survival Game (2 hours)


Your class will be transformed into a population of coyotes as students work together in packs to find a den site, avoid the lurking cougars, and collect enough food to feed their new pups.  This interactive role-playing game will introduce students to the diet, adaptations, and vocalizations of this common wildlife species.  Food chains, conservation, and human impacts will be discussed.  Students may  also have the opportunity to explore various ecosystems through a guided walk.

Location Options

Enniskillen Conservation Area (all year)

Heber Down Conservation Area (fall/spring)

Orienteering and GPS (2 hours)

This program provides an excellent introduction to maps, compasses, and GPS where students can experience firsthand the pros and cons of different orienteering technologies.  After learning the basics of compass use, students will be given an aerial orthophoto map and the opportunity to explore the conservation area’s orienteering course.  When this ancient technology has been mastered, students will be introduced to the world of GPS and Geocaching.  Students will learn the technology behind GPS, the limitations of this technology, and how to use a hand-held GPS.  Students will then have the opportunity to apply their knowledge by completing a navigation course.  They will use a set of preloaded waypoints to find hidden markers encrypted with Morse code and will need to find all the markers to decipher the puzzle. 

Location Options

Enniskillen Conservation Area (all year)

Heber Down Conservation Area (fall/spring)


Watershed Walk with Project WILD Games (2 hours)


As they explore natural communities through a guided walk, students will gain an appreciation of the importance of healthy watersheds and learn how humans impact ecosystems and water quality.  Project WILD based games and activities will give students the opportunity to become familiar with interrelationships within our local watersheds, human impacts on those relationships, and how populations depend on the health of their ecosystems.  The goal of this interactive program is to encourage students to become more ecologically aware citizens.

Location Options

Enniskillen Conservation Area (all year)

Heber Down Conservation Area (fall/spring)

Purple Woods Conservation Area (fall/spring)

Nature Art (2 hours)

With natural objects as their medium and the forest as their studio, students will have the opportunity to collaborate and create as they collect and assemble art with nature, on nature, in nature.  This creative opportunity will benefit students of all artistic abilities as it allows for a variety of creative expressions.  The program will conclude with a student guided tour of the group's newly created ephemeral gallery.

Location Options

Enniskillen Conservation Area (Feb-Dec)

Purple Woods Conservation Area (Oct-Dec)

In Your Backyard (In-school, 1 hour)

If you have access to a natural area near your school, then this program is for you. This is a customized program for schools within our watershed. It is a great way to introduce students to the natural world around them. Teachers can request specific themes and topics (e.g. habitats, plants, animals, or biodiversity).  Schools are requested to book a minimum of 2 morning or 2 afternoon classes.

Location Options

Schools must be within the CLOCA watershed and have access to a natural area.

Winter's Coming: Nature Walk with Holiday Craft (2 hours)

Come create and explore with us!  In this program your students will make a seasonal craft as well as explore our forests and meadow.  Different habitats, animal winter survival strategies, and the importance of conservation will be experienced and discussed on a guided walk with activities.

Location Option

Enniskillen Conservation Area (Nov-Dec)

Snowshoeing (2 hours)

Students will go on a walk through different habitats on snowshoes. During this 2 hour guided walk program, students will develop an appreciation for our natural world. This program was made possible by Mountain Equipment Co-op and TD Friends of the Environment Foundation.  Class sizes limited by number of snowshoes available.  


Location Options

Enniskillen Conservation Area (Jan-Feb)

Snowshoeing (In-school, 1 hour)

Discover the school yard in a whole new way. Education staff will come to your school for a 1 hour snowshoe experience. Schools are asked to organize a minimum of 2 morning or afternoon classes. This program was made possible by Mountain Equipment Co-op and TD Friends of the Environment Foundation.  Limited to 45 small snowshoes (Kindergarten – Grade 3), 30 medium snowshoes (Grade 4-6), and 30 large snowshoes (Grade 7-8).

Location Options

Schools must be within the CLOCA watershed.

Maple Syrup Sugarbush Tour (1 hour)

Students will travel through time to learn about the history of maple syrup, from its discovery by Indigenous Peoples, to the changes made by European Settlers, to our current methods. Other topics include how trees produce sap, tapping methods, and the importance of the Oak Ridges Moraine.

Tour Times

9:30-10:30 AM

10:45-11:45 AM (pancake lunch option available)

1:00-2:00 PM (pancake lunch option available)

Location Option

Purple Woods Conservation Area (March-April)

Healthy watersheds for today and tomorrow.
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Central Lake Ontario Conservation is a

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© 2019 by Central Lake Ontario Conservation

100 Whiting Avenue, Oshawa, ON L1H 3T3

Email:, Phone: 905-579-0411