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Surviving Winter

Workshop at the Museum

lemonadelucy © iStockphoto.com/lemonadelucy


Recommended for
Ontario: grades 2 and 3
Quebec: elementary cycle 2.

In this unique 90-minute workshop, students will have the opportunity to discover first-hand how animals survive Canada's harsh winter with a special look at three museum galleries.

Our hands-on workshop activities include mystery bags for learning about flight, fishing under the ice to explore winter's water environments and an opportunity to engage with live invertebrates.

Duration: 90 minutes.

Curriculum links (link goes to the bottom of the page).


  • October 3, 2017 – May 29, 2018
  • Tuesdays
  • Workshop starting time: 10 am.


  • $9 per student (tax not included)
  • Second workshop on the same day: $4 per student (tax not included)
  • See if your class qualifies for Nature Express, our financial-aid programme.

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Students will have the opportunity to discover first-hand how animals and plants survive Canada's harsh winter.

In the Bird Gallery, children will be discovering real bones and feathers inside mystery bags. In a short discussion we will be aware of migration and the purpose of feathers. The activity Should I Stay or Should I Go? will focus on the physical adaptations of specific species and the importance of migration.

In the Water Gallery, students will play an ice-fishing game. Children will pretend to go on the Ottawa River with fishing rods and find out what the animals and plants do to survive the harsh winter conditions.

In the Nature Live zone, we will present one of our live insects up close and discuss how species survive the cold. Students will learn about the life cycle of frogs and toads, and their amazing tricks to survive freezing temperatures.

Curriculum Links—Ontario

Grade 2

Science and Technology

Understanding Life Systems: Growth and Changes in Animals

  • Identify and describe behavioural characteristics that enable animals to survive.
  • Compare ways in which animals use their environment to meet their needs.
  • Describe ways in which animals respond and adapt to their environment.
  • Describe features of the environment that support the growth of familiar animals.
  • Identify and compare the effects of the seasons on animals.
  • Describe ways in which humans can help or harm other living things.

Grade 3

Science and Technology

Understanding Life Systems: Growth and Changes in Plants

  • Describe the basic needs of plants, including air, water, light, warmth, and space (compare to animals).
  • Describe ways in which plants and animals depend on each other.
  • Use appropriate vocabulary in describing their investigations, explorations, and observations.
  • Describe how most plants get energy to live directly from the sun and how plants help other living things to get energy from the sun.

Curriculum Links—Quebec

Elementary Cycle 2

Mathematics, Science and Technology

  • To become familiar with the roles and functions of scientific and technological tools, techniques, instruments and procedures.
  • Essential Knowledge: Characteristics of living things: classification of life forms; Energy—Sources of energy for living things; Interaction between living organisms and their environment: living things and their habitats; Forces and motion—How animals move (e.g., reptation, walking, flying).

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