nature

Lessons in the Kinderforest

College Kindergarten students play in the snow during a Kinderforest Day in Goshen (Ind.) College’s Witmer Woods on Jan. 15. (Goshen College photo by Brian Yoder Schlabach)

College Kindergarten students work in Witmer Woods on a fort made from branches during a Kinderforest Day on Jan. 15. (Goshen College photo by Brian Yoder Schlabach)

Teacher Jenna Labash talks to her Kindergarten class during a Kinderforest day in Witmer Woods last September. (Goshen College photo by Brian Yoder Schlabach)

About once a month, 24 students from the Goshen College Laboratory Kindergarten class—a partnership between the college’s education department and Goshen Community Schools—spend the day climbing trees, building shelters and making mud pies in Witmer Woods. 

Picture perfect

Documenting his fishing experiences piqued Jay Siemens’ interest in photography. (Photo by Jay Siemens)

Jay Siemens spent 250 days on the road last year working. (Photo by Jay Siemens)

Jay Siemens has raised nearly $45,000 for charity through sales of calendars that feature his wildlife photography. (Photo by Jay Siemens)

Photography has taken Jay Siemens around the world. (Photo by Jay Siemens)

‘Stay focussed and don’t get discouraged . . . keep snapping the shutter,’ Jay Siemens tells aspiring photographers. (Photo by Jay Siemens)

Jay Siemens was set to begin photography school in Winnipeg when, three days before classes started, his friend called him with a compelling proposition.

“He said, ‘You’ve got to drop out of school and film a fishing show with me,’ ” Siemens recalls.

So he did.

A new view of nature

I am so glad that summer is on the horizon. Spending time outdoors was a huge part of my childhood. My family shared many weekends at a small one-room cabin on a river, fishing, swimming, canoeing and just enjoying the beauty around us. We would watch the beavers make their way up and down the river, hope to see a deer come out at dusk for a drink, and listen to the wolves howl at night.

40 years of canoe tripping

Saskatchewan guide Ric Driediger helps people meet God in the wilderness. (Photo by Churchill River Canoe Outfitters)

Ric Driediger loves telling stories about his life as a canoeing guide. (Photo by Donna Schulz)

The trickling of an indoor waterfall in the room where Ric Driediger sits evokes images of a northern stream while he reflects on 40 years on the waterways of northern Saskatchewan as a canoeing guide. 

Stereotypes Written Over with Faces

Last summer, we were camping at Crabtree Falls in North Carolina. It was a new experience for us. We'd been through the state before, but had never spent a night and had never tented in that area before.

One night, after a relaxing evening around the campfire, I was peacefully dreaming, curled up in my sleeping bag. Suddenly, a strange sound broke the stillness and woke me from sleep. In half-conscious confusion, I tried to identify the source of the sound. An animal? But I couldn't tell what kind.

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