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High School

Cathy Grant

Outreach Education Instructor

905 579-0411 ext. 108


Students snowshoeing on a path in the forest
Water Quality Evaluation (1.5 hours)

Using dip nets and measuring equipment, students will explore the biological, chemical, and physical elements that are indicators of a healthy stream ecosystem.  By organizing our stream's macroinvertebrates according to their pollution tolerance level, students will also have the opportunity to use various measuring instruments to determine our stream's pH, turbidity, and temperature.  Students will compare their findings with healthy ranges and evaluate the quality of our stream ecosystem.  Erosion and various types of 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 (1.5 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)

Alien Invaders: Impacting Ecosystems (1.5 hours)


While walking through different habitats, students will discover the difference between native, non-native and invasive species.  Students will be introduced to various local invasive species and learn how these alien invaders are impacting habitats as well as the characteristics that enable them to become such incredible trespassers.  Depending on the season, this program may include garlic mustard (invasive species) removal. 

Location Options

Enniskillen Conservation Area (all year)

Heber Down Conservation Area (fall/spring)

Purple Woods (fall/spring)

Orienteering and GPS (1.5 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, as well as 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.  They need to find all the markers to decipher the puzzle.   

Location Options

Enniskillen Conservation Area (all year)

Heber Down Conservation Area (fall/spring)

Snowshoeing (1.5 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.  Limited to 30 students. 


Location Options

Enniskillen Conservation Area (Jan-Feb)

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

10:00 AM (pancake lunch option available after tour)

12:00 PM (pancake lunch option available before tour at 11:30AM)

Location Option

Purple Woods Conservation Area (March-April)

ICE SHSM: Problem Solving for Our Conservation Areas

This in-class program is designed to assist teachers in fulfilling the ICE Training for the Environmental SHSM.  As a sector partner, Central Lake Ontario Conservation Staff present an environmental problem experienced at a local conservation area.  This initiates the first gear of the ICE process by allowing students to recognize the need for change and empathetically understand the various impacts of the problem. 


Later, with their teacher, students work in groups through the process of innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship following the guidance of provided worksheets.  Finally, students write up a draft proposal of their innovative ideas including a detailed description, sketch/visual, and steps for implementation.  Central Lake Ontario Conservation (CLOCA) provides virtual feedback for the drafts and, after revisions, students present their final proposals to CLOCA staff.  Depending on teacher preference, CLOCA is willing to give feedback on students’ originality of idea, presentation skills, and presentation layout. 

Sugar Bush Tour
Orienteering & GPS
Water Quality Evaluation
Newly emerged dragonfly on its nymph exoskeleton
Fresh maple syrup pouring out of the evaporator
Coyote in the snow
Alien Invaders
Group of young people crouched in garlic mustard
Gold compass rose
ICE logo with three gears surrounded by the letters i, c, and e
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