👀 The Context
Fall colours are one of the precious delights offered every year for our enjoyment. Here are a few activities which can help students realize how the fall season and its beauty contribute to enhance the value of our territory.
As the amount of daily sunlight reduces drastically in fall, it causes a progressive change, most obvious in October, where the leaves move away from the summery green onto various shades of orange, red, yellow, and brown. This show of colour then becomes a pretext for businesses and tourist associations to put forth activities that allow admiring the fall colours.
FALL COLOURS ARE, WITHOUT A DOUBT, ONE OF THE MOST MAGNIFICENT DISPLAYS OF THE NATURAL BEAUTIES CANADA CAN OFFER.
The following activities will allow students to understand how fall can become an important asset in the promotion of specific regions.
☝️ Activity 1 : Putting Forth Touristic Territories
Media literacy skills and tools: Research, Collaborative tools, Popplet
Each region tries to put forth the resources that set them apart, and natural elements play a significant role in it. Many regions, therefore, use fall, with its colourful leaves, to promote the discovery of their territory. As an introductory activity, students may read this article from the National Post, which is a great conversation starter on how the fall colours can be appreciated differently according to the region.
Then, using the following map, ask students to:
- Identify the territories where fall is a major component in its promotion.
- Describe the arrangement and development that were made specifically to enjoy the fall colours.
- Recognize the natural elements of a territory that constitute tourist attractions.
Students then use the Popplet application to create a heuristic map in order to compile the different elements that gain in value when combined with the fall colours.
☝️ Activity 2 : Profitable Colours
Notions to be explored: Creating an advertisement, Oral interaction and presentation
Media literacy skills and tools: Creating and sharing digital content, iMovie
The “fall colours” often become a pretext to sell various products. Outdoors activities, whatever they may be, are associated with the fall colours and promoted during this period. For this activity, students will choose a product or service and promote it using the fall theme.
This activity is in three sections:
1. As a class, identify the products and services often promoted using the fall colours;
2. In small groups, ask students to prepare an advertisement using one product or service that they can link to the fall theme. This advertisement, in the form of 30-second video publicity, can be created using iMovie(here is a tutorial), which is highly compatible with iPads. For instance, one team could promote an orchard where pictures and videos where they explain the reasons people should visit. To achieve its objective, this video should make the other students want to visit the orchard.
3. Students then present their video to the class to add a positive touch to the product or activity in question. (You can also send us some of the students’ productions, so we can display them here!)
☝️ Activity 3 : Seasonal Activity Budget
Notions to be explored: Creating a budget, Work-study balance, Business models, Seasonal businesses, Necessities, and luxuries.
Media literacy skills and tools: Spreadsheets
In Canada, the 4 very distinct seasons allow for 4 very different types of seasonal activities, which is to say, a great variety. However, this seasonality brings its load of financial variability. Whereas some facilities can operate all year long while taking advantage of each season, others are ill-equipped for some seasons. They, therefore, have to be quite creative to ensure a regular business income.
- First, brainstorm with students the financial issues that push ski resorts to sell ski passes at significant discounts in the fall.
Answers may include: extensive expenses at the beginning of the season, secure a part of the revenue that won’t be affected by the winter weather conditions.
- Then, have students reflect on their personal situation considering their employment :
• What are their financial needs (housing, food, hobbies, transport, communication, education, etc.)?
• Identify the important elements in their budget (revenues, cyclic expenses, etc.)
• The pros and cons of working while they are studying.
Now that they understand the need for a budget, it is time to make one using Numbers, Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel. These spreadsheets are user-friendly and will allow students to create formulas to facilitate their calculations. This is a great opportunity to review mathematical concepts, the distinction between« needs and wants », and learn to use a spreadsheet…
✌️ Going Further
If this topic is of interest to your students, you can take advantage of a beautiful day to collect data on the pigmentation of the trees and the number of fallen leaves. The Ontario Parks website allows for this type of data collection. Using this data, it is possible to review some mathematical notions to illustrate the evolution of a forest in fall and to create models that could be used by businesses and organizations which depend on this very short-lived time period.
🔎 To Learn More
- Fall Foliage Prediction Map (USA)
- Fall Foliage Map
- Human-driven climate change is changing the colour of fall foliage, scientists say
- Could climate change affect when trees change their leaves?
A guide by Patrick St-Cyr, in collaboration with Audrey Miller and adapted in English by Valerie Harnois.