Archive for April, 2015

7th Annual Salmon Release

Admiring the lil' specimins

Admiring the lil’ specimins

It was 7 years ago that we brought the salmon program back to life. We have raised Coho salmon as a contribution to the health of our local ecosystem since- and it is awesome! It was the day after Earth Day and we had a great time.

Nmae this lil' guy!

Name this lil’ guy!

After almost 3 months of salmon captivity in the main hallway, we made the trek down to Seward Park to release them into the lake. This is always a highlight of the year and even the afternoon rains couldn’t dampen the spirits of our students.

The moment of freedom.

The moment of freedom.

Thank you to the Issaquah salmon hatchery for all their support and materials. We engaged students w/ some great projects this year around salmon. This project is students actually out in the community helping the environment and is truly an amazing community effort.

Pride.

Pride.

Kindergarten had some awesome written reflections and pictures. Eco-warriors!

Kindergarten reflection #2

Kindergarten reflection #2

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Kinder-GARDEN harvestapalooza

Show the love

Show the love

Kindergarten got to harvesting some of the spring bounty growing in the garden. The sights, the smells, the tastes- the garden is the gift that keeps on giving.

1,2,3- Bouquet!

1,2,3- Bouquet!

This valuable exploration helps children learn the names of plants & satisfies their natural curiosities about the garden.

Quite the bouquet

Quite the bouquet

Many of the plants can be felt, smelled, and even tasted. This highly experiential activity embodies what Orca stands for in the garden, hands-on learning and true experiences that kids value.

A day in the life...

A day in the life…

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The Orca culture of giving (food)

We love our relationship w/ The Rainier Valley Foodbank. We gathered much rainbow chard today- bags and bags. Kids harvesting and donating food is what this program is really about- giving a darn about the world.

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Yes, they were excited! Since our chard is set to flower, it was a good chance to discuss plant life cycles and the fact that when edible plants go to flower or seed- it is time to harvest before they expire.

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It was hard work harvesting in the sun, so we got to snacking some kale flowers. We continued our discussion of what it means when plants flower.

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There might have been a nap time on a bed of mint we harvested also…

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Orca & The Beanstalks

Eventually you run out of garden space and the only place to go is up! We built a bean pole teepee for pole beans as a collaborative project. Those huge stalks of bamboo really came in handy.

Don't try this at home kids

Don’t try this at home kids

We also built smaller versions for bush beans.

Bean tower pride

Bean tower pride

Beans are natural climbers and giving them the support they need as they grow will ensure that your home stays musical from all the beans you eat.

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The green goodness of The Orca Plant Sale!

Oh wow

Oh wow

The greenhouse is looking crazy green- a lot of work goes into caring for thousands of tomatoes & their friends. This includes waking up on weekends in a terror wondering about the state of Cherokee Purples, Martino’s Romas, Abe Lincoln’s, Sweeties, and other assorted tomato friends. But! It’s worth it. Think of how many hundreds of gardens will be filled with these plants and that is a legacy that students should be proud of.

The one, the only...

The one, the only…

This plant sale is a social enterprise that funds the PTA so that they can hire a garden teacher. Garden teacher Anthony Warner has been here 7 years and is still humbled and honored to do the do w/ these amazing kids. If you wanna volunteer & help out- please let us know! Email apwarner@seattleschools.org

seed> plant> 4" pot> gallon pot

seed> plant> 4″ pot> gallon pot

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Plant buddies & Companion planting

Miss B gets in on the action!

Miss B gets in on the action!

We got to planting flowers that attract beneficial insects for the garden. Sometimes plant starts can be devoured by those pesky aphids and other bad guys. So we plant these flowers around and invite the good guys to munch away.

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Marigolds attract ladybugs, hornflies, and other pest predators. Plant them by your young plants and they will protect.

Friends to the end: marigolds & broccolis

Friends to the end: marigolds & broccolis

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Aphid comic book strips

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The biggest garden pests got the comic book treatment here as we looked at aphids through a magnifying glass then crafted our own stories around their evil ways.

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Students were learning about how when plants start to seed and flower, that that is primarily when the aphids come in to feast. The plants are weak and the aphids know it- so it is important to remove those plants & the aphids to avoid total garden annihilation. They are incredibly creepy to look at under a magnifying glass, so it set the tone to draw stories about them and how we deal with these crafty bugs.

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