Help us Reach The Crest!
Our year-end fundraiser is in full swing. Support The Crest’s mission of cultivating the connection between people and nature. Please keep us in mind for Giving Tuesday. If you donate by November 29th your gift will be matched by a generous donor! Thank you for supporting The Crest!
Emily leading a nature walk
Students observing lichen during a forest lesson
Celebrating First Foods in the Classroom
This month, The Crest took part in a workshop hosted by OSU’s Oregon Natural Resources Education Program (ONREP) in collaboration with the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde. The workshop explored modified lessons that incorporated indigenous poems, language, and place-based knowledge from the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde.
Liz Bianco teaching first graders about native foods of southern Oregon
The Crest learned how to weave more cultural relevance into our education programming, the perfect preparation for a school visit to a local 1st-grade class that has been learning about the first foods of this land. The students learned about hunting, gathering, and crop cultivation through the seasons, accompanied by pictures and examples of first foods such as cattail, camas, yampah, ponderosa pine nuts, acorns, serviceberry, and more.
We shared a snack of rosehip tea and pine nuts and learned about local ecology as they colored a first foods packet. Each student was given a pumpkin from The Crest’s garden to take home. Then they went on an imaginary forest walk in the classroom to search for animals and plants that live here. Although Native American Heritage month happens once a year, we are energized to integrate culturally relevant materials into our lessons year-round.
Volunteers Keith and Angela removing invasive teasel
Juncos are frequent flyers at the farmhouse bird feeders. They are small, social birds that can be found in forests or at bird feeders. The ranch features two types of juncos: a sleek, slate-colored Dark-eyed junco, and the Oregon dark-eyed junco, with a brown body and black hood (pictured above).
Wild rose bushes grow here on the ranch and create an accessory fruit in the fall commonly referred to as rosehips. They are edible and contain a high amount of vitamin C. Indigenous peoples have used rosehips for food, tea, and medicine since time immemorial.