This week marked another highly successful edition of WESSA uMngeni Valley’s Bush Day Care holiday programme. Situated in Howick, uMngeni Valley Nature Reserve offers guests a chance to visit both the scenic views on the 900 Hectare reserve as well as the thriving education centre which creates curriculum based education programmes for school groups of all ages, university students and non-school groups alike.
Bush Day Care is one such quarterly programme that has been a favourite of young kids, between the ages of five and ten years, in and around the greater Howick, Hilton and Pietermaritzburg areas since 2011. This theme-based programme runs for two days over shorter school holiday periods (April and September) or five days over the longer holidays (July and December) and gives parents a chance to relax at the start of the holidays safe in the knowledge that their kids will be having a fun, educational and activity filled day under the care of uMngeni Valley’s trained Education Officers.
The themes for these programmes always include a pop culture reference that kids can relate to as well as an environmental message which is why, for the two days this month (1-2 October 2018); the theme was the Dr Seuss classic, The Lorax, which deals with the issues of human impacts on the environment, specifically deforestation and pollution.
This theme allowed the 62 kids that joined the programme this month to have a fulfilling and very orange, educational programme where they enjoyed Lorax themed crafts such as face-painting, mask making and the creation of pencil holders out of recycled materials. Other highlights of the programme included activities such as a miniature obstacle course, a scenic interpretative trail and scavenger hunt through parts of the reserve, a reading of The Lorax with questions about the environmental message in the story, a cinematic movie experience of the Lorax (which included Lorax themed popcorn boxes lovingly made by the uMngeni Valley staff) and a party lunch on the last day. Those involved with the programme, both the staff and the learners, are left often heartbroken when the two days of non-stop fun come to an end.
News supplied by Wessa Umgeni Valley.