Sunday, September 26, 2010

Fall 2010 SKIP - Mushrooms!

Game show!
Super Kids In Parks returned on Sunday for a six-week Fall session. A big welcome back to everyone who joined us from previous sessions along with a host of new SKIPs!

Our first program, led by park naturalist Alida Lemieux, introduced us to the fabulously fun world of fungus at Murphys Point! Alida shared her knowledge of mushrooms - and we had a chance to find a whole bunch of great species during the afternoon.

The activities kicked off with a game show. The SKIP kids were divided into two groups and answered a series of questions to test their knowledge of the mushroom world. We figure it ended in a draw - what a smart group of kids!
Mushroom parts
 Next it was time to learn a little about the parts of mushrooms, which isn't easy considering not all species of mushrooms have the same pieces. We did learn, however, some pretty fancy names for some of the most common parts, including the cap, ring, stalk and sock. We applied it to the "Head and Shoulders, Knees and Toes" song and threw in teeth, gills and pores, too!
Sing it!

Then we played another game to demonstrate how mushrooms reproduce and spread. Having adequate sunlight and moisture plays a part in this, as Alida demonstrated!
Just add water....

Then we headed off to the Lally Trail to look for the objects of the day. Every time we encountered something of interest we hollered "Fuuuunguuuus!" like a foghorn, summoning Alida and some field guides to help us determine what we had found. Some great species were discovered amid the leaves, rotten logs and grass along the trail.
The afternoon ended with a snack in the Lally Homestead and a chance to record some of our findings in a SKIP journal. A big thank you to Skipper Jane for the snacks and to Beth for the birthday cake (adorned with mushrooms) to celebrate volunteer Steph's birthday. Also thanks to Linda, Cathy and Nancy for helping out!

Jane with the mushroom birthday cake
There are still a few spaces left, so if you know a 7- to 10-year-old who would like to join us for the rest of the session, forms are available on the Friends website!

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