Katelyn Stryeski, a naturalist and wildlife care manager at Roaring Brook Nature Center in Canton, visited primary classes at The Cobb School, Montessori in Simsbury on February 8 to share her expertise on winter wildlife patterns as well as her love of nature.
Stryeski brought props to demonstrate how certain animals prepare for hibernation before winter arrives. She explained how each snowflake is unique even though all share a hexagon shape. Stryeski then spread out a white sheet stamped with various animal footprints and invited the children to guess which creature each print belonged to. Once the animal — a turkey, field mouse, fox, bunny, and cardinal — was identified, Stryeski pointed out the uniqueness of each footprint and how a careful tracker could tell where an animal was headed. After several fascinating lessons, Stryeski concluded by inviting the children to touch a live corn snake and a Madagascar cockroach.
Katelyn Styreski has worked at Roaring Brook Nature Center since 2006. After graduating from the University of Connecticut with a B.S. in Agriculture and Natural Resources in 2013, she joined the staff as a wildlife rehabber.
Helping children understand and appreciate the natural world is fundamental to Montessori education. The curricula at The Cobb School includes a myriad of lessons at every level on nature, wildlife, and habitats. Each classroom houses extensive resources on the natural world and is home to pets and plants. To learn more about Montessori’s focus on the life sciences such as botany and zoology, call 860.658.1144 and schedule your tour.