Monday, 16 July 2012

Farmer Fern learns Sign Language!

Today, Farmer Fern took a trip to Toronto to visit a children's camp with his puppet friends. Some of the kids at the camp have parents or siblings that are deaf or hard of hearing, so they use their hands and facial expressions to communicate. That's called Sign Language. One of the staff members at Silent Voice will tell you about that in this video...

Farmer Fern at the Guelph Enabling Garden

Last Thursday, I met some great kids at the Guelph Enabling Garden with my friend, Lea, who is a Horticultural Therapist there and also with my cousin, Cassidy. Cassidy had never been to the garden before, so I answered all his questions about the garden, then took him...and all the kids too... on a little tour of my favourite place alongside the Speed River at Riverside Park. Then we all made butterfly puppets (some actually turned into snakes and bunnies!) which fluttered around the garden visiting the various flowers. We sang songs and played on a thumb piano. It was lots of fun! Thank you to the Lea, the Playsense Kids and Staff for a wonderful morning!

Here's a video that introduces you to the creative mentors of this puppet program: Nathan, Alisa, Louisa and Sarah! Lea (in the green shirt) is one of them too. Thanks to her for inviting them, and also to our friend Erica (behind the camera) for this short video!

Cousin Cassidy and I will be back at the Guelph Enabling Garden this Wednesday, July 16th. The puppet show starts at 10 a.m. We hope to see you there! 

The Guelph Enabling Garden is located in Riverside Park. Here is a link to their blog: 


Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Wiggly Worms and Soil

The Worm 
No, little worm, you need not slip
Into your hole, with such a skip;
Drawing the gravel as you glide
On to your smooth and slimy side.

I’m not a crow, poor worm, not I,
Peeping about your holes to spy,
And fly away with you in air,
To give my young ones each a share.

O no, I’m only looking about,
To see you wriggle in and out,
And drawing together your slimy rings,
Instead of feet, like other things:

So, little worm, don’t slide and slip
Into your hole, with such a skip!

Worms play an important role in the garden.  As Charles Darwin once said, "They are the intestines of the Earth."  These little 'soil farmers' provide many benefits to plants and to us just by simply living, eating and reproducing.

Some of the wonderful things worms do in the garden:
  • Worms eat old plant material and food scraps left over in the soil and break them down
  • Worm castings or 'poop' provide food and nutrients for the plants to grow
  • When worms wiggle through the soil the tunnels they leave behind allow air and water to filter into the ground and loosen the soil for plant roots to grow
To learn more about worms here are some cool links to check out:
To learn more about where your food comes from watch this fun video and song from the Banana Slug String Band: