Photo: Ode to a tree named Jessica

Students at Wentworth gave thanks to their favourite tree as part of the 30X30 Nature Challenge.

This year's 30X30 Nature Challenge reached more than 700 Canadian classrooms from coast to coast to coast. In addition to their 30 days of outdoor activities, classes were asked to adopt a tree in their schoolyards and submit photos and stories to the Foundation. We received dozens of touching tree stories, and it was difficult to pick just one!

Congratulations to the students of Wentworth Consolidated Elementary School in Nova Scotia! Grade 1 and 2 students worked together to tell the story of their favourite tree, Jessica, chosen for her location outside the classroom window at the front of the school.

Given the school's history, students determined that Jessica had been around for a long time and had seen many changes. Their story told of the many friendships Jessica made with other trees and the schoolchildren. One student eventually grew up and stopped visiting Jessica, but many seasons later brought her son to visit and play.

The students included this poem with their story, using their five senses to describe Jessica.

To Jessica

You are tall and strong
Your bark is bumpy and rough
Your sap is sticky and sweet
You help the air stay clean
Your branches are skinny and bendy
Your trunk is nice and sturdy
Your roots like water best
Your buds will grow into leaves
You shelter us from weather
You are our favourite tree!

At the beginning of May, Wentworth Consolidated students brainstormed a list of over 70 outdoor activities they could do throughout the month. They wrote these on stars and stuck them to the wall all over the classroom.

Students also shared their fun outside — as a class and with their families — on a wall calendar. By the end of the month, the calendar was completely full!

Way to go!