Register NOW for Tapestry’s Changemakers in Action: Climate Across the Curriculum conference at Belmont Secondary on Friday, February 16, 2024. 

This conference is for K-12 Teachers and Community Educators. It will be held from 8:30 to 3 PM on Friday,, February 16

Living Lab staff and network partners are excited to be presenting two workshops at this exciting event:  

  1. Land-Based Learning
  2. Decolonizing Curriculum

Registration info is located here:

This event is proudly hosted by SSEEPSA – the Salish Sea Environmental Educator Professional Specialists Association. 

Living Lab provides enrichment to the Big Canoe Program, a place-based learning program at Shoreline middle school. The program allows middle school youth (grades 6-8) to learn about the importance of the Gorge waterway on traditional Lekwungen territories.




UVic Living Lab Project water testing

During River’s Day (Sept. 22, 2019) Talen, with help from some Oak Bay High students and Biology Teacher, Mr. Derek Shrubsol, collected some water from Bowker Creek. At UVic, the water was filtered and then the filter paper placed on media that not only helps bacteria grow, but is treated in a way that helps in the identification of the bacteria (some are blue, some red). This success (see image) is the first step in the development of a program that will eventually allow  students to monitor water (streams, lakes, bays) that matter to them. Thanks very much to Dr. Asit Mazumder at UVic for providing the reagents and equipment necessary for this water testing.

UVic Living Lab Project lab analysis
The University of Victoria – Biology Lab with Matt Miller and John Taylor.

After we collected sand and water samples from Cadboro Bay, we brought them to the University of Victoria’s biology lab to be analyzed.  We had a special guest drop by to share some zooplankton for our youth to study.


Matt Miller showing our youth some of the equipment they’ll be using.  He walked them through the entire process of preparing the saline solution, micro-filtering the samples, preparing the slides and setting up the micro-scope.







Eugene Sam and Cynthia Sam preparing their saline solution to separate the components in the samples.









Eugene filtering the water sample to see if there are micro-plastics present in the sample.









Rylan Pelkey preparing his sample for testing the presence of micro-plastics.

He is filtering his saline solution to isolate his sample so he can view it under the compound microscope.







Linda-Jane Fisher isolating her sample for lab work.









It was great to have one of our Songhees parents watch what our youth group do with our Living Science Lab work.  Lily-belle Louie joined us for a part of the day.  Her son Logan was the youngest member joining us for this 2-day UVic-SAYL Science Camp.







Matt Miller and Logan Louie doing lab work. Logan joined us for the 2-day science camp.  It was amazing seeing him fully engage with all our teachers.








Angelina Sam at UVIC’s biology lab.










Cynthia Sam in UVIC’s biology lab.










Rayn Cook-Thomas viewing samples under a compound microscope.









Matt Miller’s presentation on microplastics.




















Type 2: Secondary Microplastics










Way that microplastics end up in the ocean










Chemical impacts of microplastics










Sample of one of the microplastics found in our water or sand sample from Cadboro Bay.









Visiting biology professor Dr. Inigo Novales-Flamarique from Simon Fraser teaching our youth about photosynthesis









Phoenix Clark looking at some zooplankton under the microscope.









Matt Miller and Maeve Lydon introducing the youth to zooplankton.








Songhees Youth and UVIC team in the biology lab.

UVic Living Lab Project science adventure

We were able to spend the last part of our Science Camp with UVIC’s Digital Scholarship Commons and Science Venture.

Dr Matt Huculak and his team introduced the youth to coding and circuit boarding.

Digital Scholarship Commons with Dr. Matt Huculak and team


Dr Matt Huculak introducing Angelina Sam to circuit boarding. Digital Scholarship Commons




















Digital Scholarship Commons – Arduino cart for circuit boarding.





















Linda-Jane Fisher and Angelina Sam coding to prepare for the circuit boards.









Ladies and coding and circuit boarding.









Rayn Cook-Thomas and Cynthia Sam circuit boarding.









Matt Huculack and Songhees youth




















Logan Louie and Phoenix Clark getting their circuit boards ready to be coded.









Logan and Phoenix making NOISE with their circuit boards.  First, they had to code a program, then they prepared their circuit boards and finally programmed them to work together. This particular contraption made a very interesting sound.








Dr Matt Huculak, his assistants and Songhees Youth at the Digital Scholarship Commons.









Science Venture with Yamila Franco Pena and Team


Yamila Franco Pena and Songhees Youth.










Science Venture volunteers.










Rayn Cook-Thomas playing with some virtual reality tech.










Linda-Jane Fisher and Angelina Sam doing some VR (virtual reality).










Logan Louie and Science Venture playing in the sandbox.










Sandbox – virtual reality.










Rayn Cook-Thomas and Angelina Sam using some tech.










Tech time with Science Venture.










Phoenix Clark, Angelina Sam and Cynthia Sam – tech time with Science Venture.










Yamila Franco Pena with Science Venture wraps up our tech time with Songhees Youth.

UVic Living Lab Project students
Local History with Dr John Lutz and Dr Nick Claxton.

John showed the youth historical maps.  He talked about the importance of maps and our right to fight for our traditional food systems. Nick taught us about the importance of bringing back our traditional foods practices. He spoke of how his community brought back an ancient fishing practice.  Both John and Nick gave some historical background to the treaty process.


Dr John Lutz introducing the youth the historical maps and treaty.









Cynthia Sam, Angelina Sam, Linda-Jane Fisher & Logan Louie studying maps with John and group.









Logan Louie, Rayn Cook-Thomas and Phoenix Clark studying old maps of the City of Victoria.





















Dr. Nick Claxton telling the Songhees youth why he chose to focus on the reef net fisheries.

He learned all he could from his elders and focussed all his studies on bringing back the reef net fishing techniques.
















Nick Claxton done some intensive work with his community to prepare for the work his elders wanted from him – bring back the reef net fisheries.










Not only did Nick focus all his work on the reef net fishing, he worked very hard to bring back oral history and teachings from his elders.

















Excellent presentation by Nick Claxton on reef net fisheries.