This week we served nine schools across five districts (Beaverton, Hillsboro, Jewell, Gaston, and Forest Grove) and visited Fifteen different schools, parks, and natural areas in the region! It was a week filled with fungi, and wild animals, and so many blooming flowers!
One of our favorite activities to introduce to students is called the "Sit Spot." Sit Spots are at way for students to spend a little time being still and quite while they observe and reflect on the natural world. Many students use the time to write or draw in their journals, to sit quietly and listen to the sounds of the forest, or to just spend time reflecting on the experiences of Outdoor School. Many students report that spending this time in a Sit Spots is one of the highlights of their day.
"I had no idea you could hear so many birds when everyone stops talking"
"It was so peaceful to just sit and be in nature. I feel calm now"
"I wish I could spend more time here, it was just so beautiful."
The best part about Sit Spots, is that you can do them just about anywhere! We always encourage students to incorporate sit spots into how they spend time outdoors, in their backyards, or in nearby parks. It's amazing what you begin to notice when you slow down, take a seat, and just observe! We recommend spending at least ten minutes in a sit spot, but the longer you are there, the more amazing the experince can be!
This week we served Meadow Park Middle School from Beaverton SD and visited Cedar Ridge, Henry Hagg Lake, and Rood Bridge. As always, we made time to explore our surroundings, played games, and continued to watch spring emerge in the woods.
“Even a wounded world is feeding us. Even a wounded world holds us, giving us moments of wonder and joy. I choose joy over despair. Not because I have my head in the sand, but because joy is what the earth gives me daily and I must return the gift.”
― Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants