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School Visits

“In the words of our kids: ‘Best trip ever!’ ‘Can we come back?’ ‘When?’”—Teacher, Regent Park/Duke of York Public School

kids carrying log

Registration opens on August 22, 2022 for the 2022-2023 School Year! 

For groups of more than 40 students, please email us at school@evergreen.ca to book a program. 

About Us

Based in the heart of Toronto’s ravine system at Evergreen Brick Works, our Visiting School Program uses natural, ecological, and physical architecture to connect children to nature, get them active, and cultivate their ecological literacy. 

Join us for an exciting nature and play-based experience with your students! 

Program Details

  • Grades K–12 
  • Available October through June on Tuesdays, Wednesdays*, Thursdays and Fridays 
  • Full day programs 
  • Curriculum-linked 
  • For further program details, please review the Frequently Asked Questions 

*Wednesdays are reserved for large groups of more than 40 students and cannot be booked through our online booking system. Please email us at school@evergreen.ca if you wish to book a large group for a Wednesday.  

Kids exploring nature in the winter. Photo: Mike DerblichI think the realization for the kids and myself that the city has a gem hidden, just walking distance from the subway, is simply incredible.
Teacher, Lord Dufferin School

Rates*

The School Visits to Evergreen Brick Works program operates on a scaled model with three streams – actual cost, partially subsidized and fully subsidized. 

Evergreen is a not-for-profit organization and as such, the financial implications of COVID-19 have been significant. If your school is able, we kindly ask that you pay the full cost of $30/student.  

Should the full cost program be unavailable to your school, the partially subsidized rate can be requested.   

Eligible schools can receive a fully subsidized program. If you wish to be considered for a fully subsidized program, please read the “Qualifying for a fully subsidized program” section below and complete the eligibility criteria section of the registration form.   

Please note that we have a limited number of fully and partially subsidized programs and therefore they are subject to availability. 

*Please note that program rates are subject to change in 2023.  

Expand for detailed rate information

Program Type 

Price Per Student 

Minimum Cost 

Non-Subsidized Stream 
Actual Cost (open to any institution interested in paying true cost)  $30 $300

Subsidized Stream 

Full Subsidy 

Free 

Free 

Partial Subsidy 

$15 

$300 

High School Partial Subsidy 

$20

$300 

Fire and Ice Partial Subsidy (incl. Skate Rental)  

$20 

$300 

Qualifying for a fully subsidized program

Fully subsidized programs are available to qualifying schools located in the City of Toronto.    

TDSB schools:    

Elementary schools that rank in the Top 300 of the TDSB Learning Opportunities Index (TDSB LOI), or model schools, qualify for a fully subsidized program. High schools that rank within the top 30 schools on the TDSB LOI may also qualify.    

TCDSB schools:    

Your school’s eligibility will be assessed based on the TDSB LOI ranking of the nearest TDSB school. We recognize that the socioeconomics (median-income, level of education, etc.) of a neighbourhood can vary greatly across space. Therefore, we will also ask you to provide any supporting information during your application that demonstrates your school’s need.     

Please indicate on your application if you would like to be considered for a fully subsidized program and provide the appropriate supporting information.  

Refund & cancellation policy

PAYMENT POLICY: 

Full program payment is due no later than 7 days prior to your program date. Payments made less than 7 days prior to the program date are subject to a $50 late fee.  

Schools will be invoiced based on the number of students indicated on your booking form. Refunds will not be issued if fewer students attend than indicated on your booking form. 

CANCELLATION POLICY: 

Cancellations must be submitted in writing to school@evergreen.ca. 

Any cancellations made within 14 days of the program are subject to a $50 administrative fee, with the exception of bursary programs which will be charged $25. Cancellations within 24 hours of program start time or no shows will be charged in full.  

Administrative fees will still be charged for cancellations made by clients or Evergreen due to inclement weather including flooding, changing public health regulations or COVID-19 related closures. Programs rebooked for a later date will have administrative fees waived. 

REFUND POLICY: 

Programs cancelled within 14 days will receive a full refund of any payments minus the applicable administrative fee.  

Programs cancelled within 24 hours will not be issued a refund.  
Up to 14 days before your program date, any paid in-person program may be exchanged for a paid virtual program if payment has not yet been received. 

Program Offerings

See our program offerings for:

Seasonal & Specialty

Nature Play (Grades 1-8): Join us to experience a day of outdoor fun, the Evergreen way! Students will engage in active, place-based games and get a chance to explore the wild side of the Evergreen Brick Works using all their senses. A natural palette of loose parts will inspire child-led play while our facilitators connect and ground students to the land beneath their feet in our award-winning Children’s Garden.   

The Fire Challenge (Grades 4-8): Learn the basics of safe fire building in preparation for an exciting teambuilding-based challenge. Groups will race to see who can be the first to light a fire which burns strong enough to ignite a suspended rope in this classic twist on a camp favourite! Participants will also play active fire-themed games and get a chance to roast a seasonal treat over an open flame. 

Fire & Ice (Grades 2 and up): Join us for an unforgettable winter experience that will engage even the most reluctant winter participants. The day will include skating on our sustainably cooled ice rink with basic lessons and alternative activities for any non-skaters. We’ll also engage in educational fire-making and shelter building activities and cozy up to a bonfire accompanied by storytelling and apple roasting. All skating equipment provided and extra warm clothing available. Heated floors and indoor spaces are available for warming breaks.   

Winter Wilds (Grades 1-8): Embrace the magic of wintertime with memorable activities that celebrate the snow and ice alongside warming fires and active seasonal games. We'll track animal footprints, dive into winter-based nature play, construct weatherproof shelters and more! Extra warm clothing and indoor warm-up spaces available throughout the program day.   

Kindergarten

Urban Animal Adventures: Children are naturally curious about the animals that inhabit the world around them. Through stories, guided exploration and free play, students will learn about the different animals that fly, hop, burrow, and swim at Evergreen Brick Works. Students will make connections to what they see at Evergreen Brick Works with what they find in their communities. 

Grade One

The Living City: This program introduces students to Toronto’s surprising abundance of living things—fox, deer, coyote, rabbit, and a host of birds, insects and plants—and how they all need food, water and shelter. Students will explore the natural community around them and learn about how seasons impact living things. We will explore what living things provide to one another and build animal homes. 

Grade Two

Water, Water Everywhere: Students will discover the local ravine landscape, including Mud Creek, which meanders through the heart of the Evergreen Brick Works. Students will explore the dynamics of moving water in mini rivers, dams, beaver lodges and more. Water is a feature central to communities around the world and Toronto’s relationship with water is a case in point.  

Take a Walk on the Wild Side: Students will explore the landscape through the eyes of the local animals. By engaging all of their senses, students will track the animals and learn about their interesting characteristics and behaviours. Through games, stories and habitat-building, students will learn about the importance of protecting the land for generations to come.  

Grade Three

Earth Shelters: Children are builders by nature. In this program they use natural materials to create shelters that mimic the architecture of plants and animals. Working in groups, students will explore how different building techniques can affect the strength and stability of structures.  

Grade Four

Our Home and Habitat: This is a wide-ranging exploration of the hills and dales of Toronto’s unique ravine landscape. The ravines of Toronto play host to an amazing diversity of wildlife, and students will learn where and how these creatures live together in the same space with enough food, water and shelter. In a sustainable city, physical and human geography are in harmony, and the connection between people and place is strong and vibrant.  

Geology Rocks: Evergreen Brick Works sits on the floodplain of the Don River, where there was once an industrial quarry the size of the Rogers Centre. The quarry excavated clay and shale to make the bricks that built this city; but the process of digging exposed half a billion years of geological time and an epic tale of nature’s history. Students will explore how the landscape evolved naturally and through human interventions.  

Grade Five

Stealing Fire: Energy begins with the sun. This energy flows through the green leaves and needles of the plant kingdom into the metabolism of animals, including human beings. Unlike other animals, human beings learned to make fires – a form of energy that keeps us warm, helps us prepare food and lifts our spirits. In this program, students will have the opportunity to build their own fires and explore how energy is transferred and transformed in the environment.  

Grade Six

The Web of Life: The mosaic of wetland, forest and meadow at the Evergreen Brick Works represents some of the most biologically diverse habitats in the city, home to a myriad of species from deer and beaver to coyotes, hawks and snapping turtles.  In this program, students will learn about the astonishing biodiversity of the ravine’s ecosystems and the characteristics of the species that live there. They will build models of ecosystems and explore the connections within and across ecosystems. 

Grade Seven

Wild in the City: With its rivers, forests and dramatic geography, Toronto’s ravine system defines the City's landscape. Students will get a close up look at the ravine system that cuts through the Brick Works and learn about the plants and animals that inhabit this ecosystem, and how human actions impact them. Students will learn about ecosystem dynamics and create models to better understand the interactions between living things that take place in our city.   

Grade Eight

Exploring our Watershed: Evergreen Brick Works is located in the heart of the Don Valley watershed. Students will have the opportunity to explore the site and adjacent park for signs of watershed management and discover strategies used to mitigate pollution and human impact. Students will get creative and experiment with different ways to protect our watershed. 

Grade Nine to Twelve

Indigenous Land Connections (Available on an inquiry basis – please email us!): Join us on an exploration of Indigenous land connections with a focus on urban agriculture. We’ll explore traditional techniques for gardening, learn about common native plants grown throughout the landscape, and dive into discussions on how plants can heal and nourish the mind and body.    

 

Teambuilding: Join us for an exciting, experiential teambuilding program focused on collaboration, problem solving, and leadership development. Set against a backdrop of sustainable green design and innovative city building, youth will participate in group games, nature connection, wellness, and mindfulness activities focused on building collaboration and problem-solving abilities. Working together to overcome exciting real-world challenges, students are encouraged to develop and share their ideas while building resilience and developing empathy for each other and the natural world. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What does a typical day at Evergreen Brick Works look like?  

The specifics of your day at the Brick Works will depend on the program you select, however there are some key components that all programs will include.  

Please find the rough schedule below of a typical day at the Brick Works: 

  • 10 am – Arrival and Opening Circle 
  • 10:30 am – Nature Hike, with curriculum connections to selected program 
  • 11:30 am– Lunch and free time in Evergreen’s Award Winning Children’s Garden  
  • 12:30 pm – Program specific activity (ex. Loose parts habitat build, skating, fire building) 
  • 1:30 pm – Closing Circle 
  • 2:00 pm – Departure  

Additional activities may occur throughout the day depending on program and timing, including curriculum connected games and storytelling. Timing may vary.  

How many students can participate in a program?  

The maximum number of students we can accommodate per program slot is 40. If you have 40 or fewer students in your group, please register via our online booking system, Checkfront.  

If you have a group with more than 40 students, please send us an email at school@evergreen.ca We will do our best to accommodate larger groups where our staff and space capacity allow for it.  

What time do programs start and end? How do I get to and from the site?  

When registering through our online booking system, please indicate the time you would like to begin and end your program. The options for arrival are as follows:  

  • 9:30 am arrival at Castlefrank Subway Station – For classes traveling via subway, Evergreen facilitators will meet you at the subway station and facilitate the hike to site as part of the program. The hike takes about 45 minutes, so we recommend this option for grades 2 and up.   
  • 10:00 am arrival at Evergreen Brick Works (550 Bayview Ave.) – For classes travelling via school bus or other form of private transportation, please meet us by the Central Parking Lot of the Evergreen Brick Works site.  

Please select your preferred departure time from the following:  

  • 1:30 pm from Evergreen Brick Works – For classes that need to get back to school early! You may depart via school bus or other form of private transportation, TTC bus or via self-guided walk to Castle Frank Subway Station 
  • 2:30 pm from Evergreen Brick Works – For classes that want a slightly longer day at the Brick Works! You may depart via school bus or other form of private transportation, TTC bus or via self-guided walk to Castle Frank Subway Station 

How many adult supervisors can accompany my class on the trip? 

In addition to teachers, we welcome parent/guardian volunteers on visits to Evergreen Brick Works. While we don’t have a limit on the number of parent/guardian volunteers, we would recommend 4 adults (teachers + parent/guardian volunteers) per classroom. 

If you have questions about the program, please contact us at school@evergreen.ca or 416-596-1495 x289.