• EPCOR Environmental Education Centre

Education Resources

The purpose of these resources is to help the Okotoks education community address sustainability issues and give students, teachers, administrators, and staff the ideas and resources necessary to take initiative at four levels of action: in the classroom, in the school, in the community, and in the home.

The Town of Okotoks offers both field trip opportunities and educational presentations for kids.  From waste management solutions to caring for the Sheep River watershed, kids will learn about their impact on the earth and how to be aware caregivers of our planet.

 

School/Community Group Presentations

All presentations can be tailored for any grade level and can be booked using our online Presentation Request Form.

If there are other topics that you would like to hear about, please contact us.

*Please note that presentations are done in the EPCOR Environmental Education Centre. Most presentations can also be brought to a classroom.

All grade levels listed below indicate that the content is specific to the Alberta curriculum outcomes for those grades. 

Air Quality

Students will learn about air quality, how it is measured, and how our actions can help to make it better or worse.

  • Included activity: Students will participate in a jeopardy style game to learn more about air quality, pollution, and how to keep our air clean.
  • Length: 1 hour
  • Grade level: 4, 6
Crazy About Compost

Learn about what compost is and the great impact that compost has on garden soil and plants!

  • Included activity: Make a compost tea bag for plant fertilizer or beginning a classroom experiment with compost infused soil and observing its impact on plant growth (Class to please provide yogurt containers for pots); Play a game to recognize important roles in the composting cycle. 
  • Length: 1 hour
  • Grade level: 1, 3, 4
Ecosystems

Learn more about the ecosystems that we are a part of in Okotoks, how we can take care of them, and how they take care of us and the planet.

  • Included activity: Each participant will get to choose their favorite organism and learn about where it fits in the food web. A food web game will be played with a ball of yarn to discover more about the connection between organisms in an ecosystem.
  • Length: 1 hour
  • Grade level: 1-6
Our Changing Climate

Students will learn about climate change and its impact in Okotoks and around the world.  They will also explore how they can adapt to the effects of climate change, but also how they can make a difference in slowing down the warming of the planet's atmosphere.  What is Okotoks' doing about climate change? They will learn answers to that too!

  • Included activity: Using popcorn, students will represent different countries and learn about greenhouse gas emissions in our atmosphere.
  • Length: 1 hour
  • Grade level: 5-12
Pollinators
  • Learn about the importance of pollinators in local ecological communities and in food production.

  • Included activity: Students will use their imaginations and problem solving skills to design pollinator-friendly areas for their school grounds. The area drawings will then be presented to the class. Schools are encouraged to use this as a launching point for implementing pollinator-friendly practices and becoming an official “Bee School”.
  • Length: 1 hour
  • Grade level: K-12

 

BEE FRIENDLY PLANTS

Storm Water Systems

This presentation has kids look at the impact their actions in yards have on the river.

How do lawn fertilizer, dog poop, and car leakages affect plants and animals in the river?  How does our storm drain system work in Okotoks?

  • Included activity: Using a model, kids will follow Frankie the Fish down a stream as it becomes polluted from storm water runoff. Students observe how everyday activities can pollute the stream, change the water quality and eventually make Frankie and the other animals and plants in the water sick. 
  • Length: 1 hour
  • Grade level: 2, 4, 5
Trees of the Sheep River Valley

Students will learn about trees in the Sheep River valley and the important role they play in Okotoks and around the world.

  • Included activity: Students will go on a guided tour of the Living Soils Filtration Project, and participate in a forest scavenger hunt.
  • Length: 1 hour
  • Grade level: 4, 6
Trout Unlimited - Water Edu-Kit Program (Gr 7-9)

The Water Edu-Kit program provides tools and instructions for teachers, community leaders and
youth to improve their water literacy by learning about the science of water, and exploring ways
to make a positive difference to their local waters. Youth will learn about their watersheds and
water bodies in detail and including: water quality, aquatic biology, and water stewardship.

Teachers are welcome to sign out the kit or to book the learning session with Town staff.

Waste Management/Eco Centre Tour
  • Do you know where the waste from Okotoks ends up and what it get turned into? This is your chance to learn how efficient waste disposal can help the environment by reducing landfill use and the exploitation of natural resources.  When things can’t be recycled or composted, they go to the landfill! Landfills are specially designed to prevent pollution of the environment. Learn about how landfills are designed and managed to make sure the environment is kept safe!

  • Included activity: Students will participate in a waste sorting game specific to Okotoks waste streams to learn where to put their waste. Students are challenged to organize and conduct a similar audit in their classroom and calculate how they are offsetting their environmental footprint! Students will also get to explore the Eco Centre, and discover the inner workings of a landfill using a 3D model.
  • Length: 1 hour 
  • Grade level: 4
Water and Waste Water Treatment in Okotoks
  • Did you know that the water you drink comes from the river? Did you also know that the water that goes down your drains ends up back in the river? Learn how our water is cleaned before and after you use it in a virtual step by step walk-through of the water and waste water treatment facilities. 

  • Included activity:  Students will test their knowledge about water conservation through various games played as a single group.
  • Length: 1 hour 
  • Grade level: 4
Wetlands

Presentations are provided by Trout Unlimited.

Topics:

Healthy Watershed for Everyone - Gr K-3 - Presentation is specific to the Sheep River Watershed, including a hands-on demonstration of watershed components and hazards to its overall health.

Fish Life & Human Solutions - Gr 4Presentation is specific to species within the Sheep River, and includes interactive demonstrations on what a fish needs to live and maintaining a healthy watershed. 

Frogs, Wetlands & Watersheds - Gr 5Presentation includes interactive demonstrations on the threatened Northern Leopard Frog and maintaining a healthy wetland.

Journey Down the River- Gr 7-9 - How does storm water pollution affect fish species? What’s in my watershed? What constitutes a healthy watershed? Includes interactive demonstration on species within a watershed, their habitat, harmful pollutants, and concludes with a Jeopardy trivia game.

Length: 1 hour

Yellow Fish Road Program
  • In partnership with Trout Unlimited, this presentation explores the topics of aquatic species who are vulnerable to contaminants in our water supply, and the importance of keeping lawns and roads free of chemicals. Students will interact with 'Frankie the Fish' to observe the effects of chemicals washing down storm drains and polluting surrounding bodies of water. 

  • Included activity: A presentation is offered before the Yellow Fish Road activity. The activity includes students painting a yellow fish next to storm drains in local communities to raise awareness about dangers of storm water runoff into the Sheep River.  Please allow a full 3 hours for the presentation and painting of storm drains. Extra adult volunteers may be needed depending on the group size.
  • Please note that this is offered only in spring/summer/early fall due to weather conditions.
  • Grade level: 3 -12
Field Trip Opportunities
Eco-Centre (Recycling Facility)
  • Tour the Okotoks Eco Centre and learn about our waste diversion facility.  This field trip is in combination with the Waste Management and Engineered Landfills presentation which takes approximately 1 hour.
EPCOR Environmental Education Centre (Presentation choice included)
  • Visit the centre to learn about our watershed, our Living Soils Filtration project, invasive species and more!
  • Please fill out the form to indicate what you'd like to learn about during your visit.
Foothills Regional Landfill
  • Learn how a landfill operates and what happens to things that we throw in the garbage.
  • Contact: Foothills Regional Landfill (403) 938-5224; http://foothillslrrc.com/contact/
Nature through the eyes of children

Find out what the Nature-Based Learning Grade 4 class from Westmount School recommends for exploring nature and fun places to with your family in Okotoks.

Visit their website

Outdoor Discovery from the Library

The Okotoks Public Library has some great resources to get everyone outside exploring Okotoks and Alberta!

Snowshoes and Walking Poles

Explore the river valley with the help of some snowshoes or use some walking poles to go for a hike in the Town's beautiful natural areas.  These items can be borrowed for hiking in the foothills or mountains too!

Discover Nature Explorer Packs

Animal tracks, wild flowers, leaves, and bugs are just a few of the many things to learn about and look for in Okotoks.  Use a Discover Nature Explorer Pack to take a closer look at the beautiful ecosystem we are a part of! 

Remember to care for the eco-system: Leave all animals/bugs in their natural habitat and do not pick wild flowers.  If left alone they are able to come back year after year.

Pack includes: Bugshell binoculars, magnifying equipment, plant and animal identification pamphlets, field guides, and an activity/game booklet.

*Donated to Okotoks Public Library by Alberta Parks

**This item is for adult use and/or supervision only.

Note: You must have an Okotoks Public Library membership to borrow these items.

Click on the links below to learn for our detailed pathway/trail map and our food forest map:

Okotoks Pathway Trail Map

Okotoks Food Forest Map

Publications & Forms

Municipal Centre
Sun: Closed
Mon - Fri: 8:30 am - 4:00 pm
Sat: Closed
Sun: Closed
Mon - Fri: 7:30 am - 4:00 pm
Sat: Closed
Closed during statutory holidays