Gumboot studio´s Sabrina Marie Upton created the exterior artwork for the bus. She managed to bring the ORCA vision to life and the beautiful images represent our community well. To determine the final artwork a community vote of 168 ballots was held.
Elemental Design and Millwork: donated their time to create a beautiful space for our families, here is a link to their instagram post about the launch event.
Drew Blaney and Sosan Blaney: provided artistic perception and advice in representing the Tla´amin nation and language in our vision.
Tin Hat Services: donated time and work installing the furnace.
CMG Printing: collaborated with our artists.
Top of the Hill: installed our solar panels.
Custom Flooring: installed our linoleum flooring
This project also came about with the help of our early learning agencies and our volunteer drivers, who were a vital part of the process. Their knowledge, skills, and commitment are essential to the success of the ORCA Bus. In particular, our dedicated volunteer Don Edwards drove the bus to Vancouver for the installation of the beautiful vinyl wrap graphics and put in many hours of labor, working on the refit of this bus. Thank-you Don!
Also, a big thank-you to Bob Nassichuk and D&D Storage for allowing us to store the bus ahead of the launch! Finally, thanks to all of the families that are part of our ORCA Bus community and helped move the toys from the old bus onto the new one!
There are so many people who made this project possible, it is truly a collaborative community project. We are starting back to outdoor programming, after a long break, and we cannot wait to see you! You can find the schedule here.
New school, new daycare, new preschool, or just back to class during a pandemic? We all have so much on our minds these days! This is the week to set your family up for a smooth transition!
A few ideas to try this week: plan lunches together, shop for school supplies together, and play at the schoolyard!
This article gives some great tips for easing back-to-school anxiety, including: listening to their concerns and doing a rehearsal of the drop off routine. Here is a great step-by-step guide to lessen the anxiety, one week before, 2-3 days before, and day of.
You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
- Dr. Seuss
We posted this free downloadable book and video link on our Facebook page, check it out! It is called 'Returning to School: What will it be like for you?' It is geared to children 2 - 7 years old.
A few more resources:
Here is School District #47's Strongstart's Kindergarten Guide and here is the Ministry of Education's 'When I go to Kindergarten' book.
Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school.
- Albert Einstein
How will you get where you need to be in the morning? Have you considered active transportation? Get the blood pumping and prepare you and yours for the day ahead! Have a great week everyone!
"Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself." - John Dewey
Hello! It is never too soon to get children involved in healthy food choices, kitchen safety and clean up! This is a fantastic list divided up for 2-3 year olds and 4-5 year olds.
Do you remember those sugary fruit rolls up of your childhood? Here is a a healthier version with fruit, honey, and lemon juice! Kids still love them!
“…no one is born a great cook, one learns by doing.” - Julia Child
Does cooking with a child seem stressful? Here are 22 tips to make it more fun! Five reasons you should be cooking with kids, according to the New York Times, including 'it brings cooks of all ages closer!'
"Cooking with kids is not just about ingredients, recipes, and cooking. It's about harnessing imagination, empowerment, and creativity."
- Guy Fieri
Here are some meals (older) kids can make on their own, or for the younger ones, layout the ingredients for something simple like 'toasts' and let them create!
August is our chance to embrace summer! Here are a few ideas and bits of inspiration, read on!
"Summer afternoon—summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language." —Henry James
Powell River Family Place is hosting Family Place Sprouts, either virtually or booked visits in their garden. Find out more here. And, the latest Powell River Public Library (virtual) Preschool Storytime is themed 'In the Garden', check it out here.
"To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow." —Audrey Hepburn
Here in Powell River, we have so much local produce, you don't need to look far to get your hands on some! Try taking the kids to one of the local U-Pick Berry Farms: Rusty Gate, Coast Berry, and Blueberry Commons to name a few!
"Smell the sea, and feel the sky. Let your soul and spirit fly." —Van Morrison
We recently came across this fantastic website: Appetite to Play. It promotes healthy eating and and physical activity in preschool children 0 - 5 years old. Have a look! Enjoy your week and EMBRACE SUMMER!
Hello and Happy Monday! We hope you enjoyed some summer fun, this weekend!
Despite spending times outdoors, we are trying to stick with our reading routine to avoid the #summerslide. We love fairy tales - they offer a sense of escape, develop the imagination, and are simply magical!
Once upon a time the famous physicist Albert Einstein was confronted by an overly concerned woman who sought advice on how to raise her small son to become a successful scientist. In particular she wanted to know what kinds of books she should read to her son.
“Fairy Tales,” Einstein responded without hesitation.
“Fine, but what else should I read to him after that?” the mother asked.
“More fairy tales,” Einstein stated.
“And after that?”
“Even more fairy tales,” replied the great scientist, and he waved his pipe like a wizard pronouncing a happy end to a long adventure.
¨Today´s special moments are tomorrow´s memories.¨
This is where frogs chat to princesses, wolves huff and puff, and gingerbread men run away...check out these (short) readings of the classics.
¨Remember, you´re the one who can fill the world with sunshine.¨
- Snow White
Here is an interesting article about why the ages 2 - 7 matter so much for brain development and more about Einstein!
¨My heart has wings and I can fly. I´ll touch every star in the sky. So this is the miracle I´ve been dreaming of.¨
Hello everyone! Did you have a busy weekend outside? Here are some ideas to have an energetic week!
Do you have a child interested in skateboarding? Here are some Skateboarding 101 tips and how to choose a helmet!
“Hopefully, kids realize you can do anything you want.
Skateboarding can be that gateway.”
~ Ryan Sheckler
Do you have a fidget spinner in your toy box? Here are some fun activities to try with it!
“Nothing lights up a child’s brain like play.” ~ Dr. Stuart Brown
Here are some ideas for being active without sports, including: hiking, biking and yoga. And ideas on how to get kids to love being active!
“Play is our brain’s favorite way of learning.” ~ Diane Ackerman
Here is a fun way to learn your ´ABCs´, make your body into a life size alphabet! Have fun!
This week´s blog post is all about water, safety, and bubbles! Read on.....
Every child loves a sprinkler! Here are some games to play while the garden is also being watered!
Check out this list for some of the best swim spots in Powell River and a strong reminder about water safety from a drowning investigator.
Easy backyard summer games are a must on sunny days, here are some ideas! Including simple things like water balloons, a game of drip, drip, drop (like duck, duck, goose), and sponge toss!
Most summer activities and camps are cancelled; but, the magic of the season is not! Let´s try to recreate that fun and magic at home! Find some ideas here!
Here are some fantastic camp ideas, including: throwing a living room camp out, card games, scavenger hunts, and water balloon fights! This list includes 7 camp games which consider physical distancing.
If you are comfortable with your child attending an actual day camp, this one for 4 - 6 year olds, happening July 20 - 24 in Powell River, looks amazing!
This is an interesting article about the least and most risky activities to consider this summer. Hint: hiking, beaches and other outdoor activities are the safest choices.
Children today are playing outside less than our generation. Now is the time to get outdoors! Here is a great resource as to why it is so important for our children.
Jumpstart, Canadian Tire´s program which supports all children gaining access to sport and physical activity, is offering this virtual summer camp. You can also follow their Facebook page.
And, if you have a nature lover in your crew, consider this BC Wildlife Federation Virtual camp. For a cost of $20 (use code ´ohcanada´ at checkout for $10 off until July 11), you can purchase a ´Camp pass´ that will give you access to 7 weeks of weekly courses, on topics such as: bees/pollination, survival skills, ecosystems and animal identification. Best for children 4+
We only have 18 summers with our ´babies´! Let´s embrace those warm evenings, sprinkler games, and sticky ice cream fingers! Have a good week!
Eat local! Urban homesteading! Food security!
Terms that are top of mind these days as we have witnessed disruptions to the global food system. By supporting local farmers, or growing it yourself, you are creating a healthier and stronger food system for yourself, your family and our community. It is never too soon to teach children where food comes from and may help stimulate an interest and palette for homegrown, vibrant food!
Lift Food Security Project in partnership with Tla´amin Nation have created the Good Food Box. Packed full of nutritious fruits and veggies, local whenever possible. Anyone is welcome to purchase a box for $25. You can find out more on this Facebook page or order online here.
Have you heard of The Urban Homesteading School of Powell River? They offer courses and tips on homesteading and self reliance. Recently, they have launched the Pandemic Merit Badges, find out more here. The badges are geared towards adults; but, there is no reason you cannot get the little ones involved in some of these projects!
Join the Urban Chicken Movement! Three chickens are allowed in most Powell River backyards. You can find out more details here. Join the local Backyard Chicken Facebook Group here, for tips, info, and exchanges. Alternatively, buy local eggs. The Powell River Market has a post about local eggs here. Due to current circumstances the weekend Farmer´s Market is shop only, you won´t find the kid´s play area that we all know and love! You can also shop online and just swing by to pick up your order.
The summer growing and harvest season is hitting full swing. We are fortunate to have many farm gate purchasing opportunities, including veggies, berries, eggs, and honey. Home Grown magazine is a great resource, check it out online here.
Maybe getting some dirt on your hands is just what you need to find balance during these uncertain times? Join a work bee at Blueberry Commons, check their Facebook page for details and upcoming dates!
Have a great Canada Day week! We are so fortunate to live where we do, let´s celebrate it!
Summer is here and it is bike season! Now is the time to get outside and ride!
A bike parade is a fun, festive and safe way to get outside. Join a few friends, while maintaining social distancing. Here is an article about bicycle safety, in our current circumstances.
But first, you need to decorate your bike! Here is an idea for handle bar streamers, made from supplies you likely have around the house. You could also decorate with stickers, pipe cleaners, and artwork.
For a little inspiration, here is one of our favorite books about cycling, ´Along a Long Toad´, by Frank Viva, read aloud. Here are more great books about bike riding.
Maybe you have a little one on a tricycle or maybe this is the perfect time to make the move to a two-wheeler! Here and here are some tips for taking the leap.
Some adults have been learning to ride for the first time too! It is hard not to be happy on a bicycle, just what we need in these uncertain days!
The ORCA Bus is an early years outreach vehicle dedicated to providing all children, in Powell River and qathet Regional District, with a good start in life. The ORCA Bus's mission is to ensure that all families have access to early years services.
All content is © 2021 by the ORCA Bus