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Pride season

Pride season in Canada is from June to September. Pride is about being proud of who you are no matter who you love. Pride celebrates and promotes equality for 2SLGBTQI+ people. The letters stand for Two-Spirit, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Intersex. The plus sign (+) includes other words that people use to identify…

Community
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Totem poles

Totem poles are tall wood carvings. They are made by West Coast First Nations. Most totem poles are carved from cedar wood. You can see totem poles in many places throughout B.C. There are totem poles in Stanley Park in Vancouver. There are also totem poles in Victoria, Sechelt, Alert Bay and Haida Gwaii. A…

Community Culture
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Help keep wildlife safe

There are things you can do to help keep wildlife safe. These things can help you stay safe too. Keep wild animals safe Food can attract wild animals. It can be dangerous for both people and the animals. Here’s what to do: Store garbage indoors or get a bear-proof container. Pick up fruit that falls…

Animals Environment Nature
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Elephant’s feet crosswalks

Some communities in B.C. have special crosswalks. They are called “elephant’s feet” crosswalks. They help keep people on bikes and pedestrians stay safe when crossing the road. What do they look like? Elephant’s feet crosswalks have two lines of white squares. The squares look like an elephant’s footprint. Sometimes there is a bicycle symbol between…

Community
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Tick season

Spring is tick season. Ticks are small bugs that suck blood. They live in many places in B.C. Ticks can spread disease to people and animals. Getting bitten by a tick can make you sick. WildSafe BC has tips on how to avoid ticks and tick bites: Avoid areas where there are ticks. Walk on…

Environment Nature
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Make a milk jug greenhouse

A milk jug greenhouse is a great way to reuse empty and clean milk jugs. When it is too cold to plant seeds in the ground, you can start growing them in a milk jug greenhouse. What you need: clean, plastic milk jug knife seeds soil duct tape water What you do: Cut around the…

Nature
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Tax time help

  It’s tax time. Do you need help filing your tax return? Volunteers can help you at a free tax clinic. They can help people who have no income or low income. You can get help if: your income is less than $35,000 for one person. your income is less than $50,000 for a family…

Community
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March Break staycation tips

This March Break take a staycation. A staycation is a stay-at-home vacation. You can do fun things in your own town or city. You can save money on travel, airfare or hotels. Here are some staycation tips. Free activities  Look for free concerts, movies, festivals and fairs in your community. Check online or visit your…

Community Family
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B.C. food from the sea

B.C. farms and sells many types of food from the sea. Have you tried any of this food? Geoduck clams The geoduck clam is the world’s largest burrowing clam. It can weigh over two pounds. Geoduck clams are salty and sweet. They are expensive. They can cost as much as $30 per pound! Sea cucumber…

Food Nature
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Valentine’s Day

In ancient times, Romans held a feast day in February. The day brought people together as couples. Why is it called Valentine’s Day? Valentine was a Roman priest. The Roman emperor wanted young men to be soldiers and not marry. Valentine helped people marry in secret. Valentine was caught and killed on February 14. People…

Culture Holidays
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Swedish butter ball cookies

These cookies are tasty and easy to make. They are great for all year round.   What you need: 1 cup soft butter ½ cup icing sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla 2 ¼ cups white flour 1 cup chopped pecans ¼ cup icing sugar What you do: Heat the oven to 400 degree F. Cream the…

Food
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Be prepared

  Winter driving can be dangerous. Roads can be slippery. It can be hard to see the road when it is snowing. Sometimes cars get stuck. You might have to wait for help. A winter emergency kit can help you stay safe and warm. Your winter emergency kit doesn’t have to be big. You can…

Health Nature
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Make a snowman card!

When you give someone a card, it shows you care. Here is a card you can make yourself. A homemade card can be special. What you need: white cardstock paper orange paper pink paper a black marker scissors glue stick What you do: Fold a piece of white cardstock in half. Cut out a carrot…

Holidays
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November is Financial Literacy Month in Canada

November is Financial Literacy Month in Canada. Financial literacy means knowing how to spend and save your money. It also means knowing how to invest and borrow money. In November, organizations help Canadians learn to: • manage their money and debt. • save for the future. • understand their financial rights and responsibilities. Here are…

Social Issues
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Keep children safe on Halloween

Halloween is on October 31. Children will be going out in costumes at night for candy. B.C. Children’s Hospital has these tips to keep children safe: Safe costumes Use face paint, not masks so children can see better. Costumes should not drag or trip. Stick together An adult should always be with children. Hold hands…

Culture Food Health
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How to French tuck or half tuck

Do you tuck in your top or leave it untucked? Before, people either tucked in a shirt, or they didn’t. But now, some people tuck in only part of the shirt. There are two ways to do this: the French tuck and the half tuck. These are casual looks. Use loose, lightweight tops and mid-to-high…

Culture
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Let’s celebrate Literacy Month

In B.C., we celebrate Literacy Month. Literacy is important to everyone. This year’s theme is “Literacy connects us!” Enter the Literacy Month Photo Contest: Take a photo of yourself doing one of the activities from the calendar below. Send your entry to contest@decoda.ca or post to Facebook.com/decodaliteracy or Twitter @decodaliteracy. Use the hashtag #Connect4Lit23. Enter…

Community
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B.C. Wildfires

Every year, there are hundreds of wildfires in B.C. Wildfires destroy homes, buildings and land. They can kill people and animals. What causes wildfires?   Lightning strikes cause 60 per cent of wildfires. People start the other 40 per cent. How do I stay safe during a wildfire? Listen for instructions from the B.C. Government….

Community Nature
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Easy popsicle recipe

In 1905, Frank Epperson invented a sweet, frozen treat on a stick. He was 11 years old. In 1923, his children named the treat “pop’s ‘sicle.” Today, two billion popsicles are sold every year. What you need: 1 cup of fruit juice 2 cups of fruit (mango, mixed berries, kiwi or your favourite fruit) ice…

Food
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Be Bear Smart

In the fall, bears go into hibernation. When bears hibernate, they sleep in their dens. They do not eat or drink. Bears lose a lot of weight when they hibernate. So, they spend the summer eating. Why do bears like garbage? Most human food is calorie-dense. This means that a bear needs to eat only…

Animals
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Pet parrots taught to make video calls

Parrots are special birds. They are very smart. They can copy sounds and talk. Parrots like to talk to other parrots. Parrots get lonely when they cannot talk to each other. Lonely parrots Some people keep parrots as pets. Because there are no other parrots to talk to, they get lonely. Sometimes they harm themselves….

Animals
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Dogs in hot cars

In warm weather, cars and other vehicles heat up very fast. Pets can get very sick if left in a hot, parked vehicle. What happens to your dog in a hot car? Dogs cannot release heat by sweating like we do. Their body temperature rises much quicker than ours. Hot weather is worse for some…

Animals
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Be Kind to Animals Month

May is Be Kind to Animals Month. It celebrates our love for animals and brings awareness to animal welfare. Being kind to animals includes taking care of your pets and treating local wildlife with respect. What if you find a wild animal? If you find a wild animal alone, sick or injured, they might need…

Animals Nature
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Farmers’ markets

Farmers’ markets in B.C. are opening up for the season. They offer a wide variety of things to buy, including fresh fruits, vegetables, jewelry, music and much more. What is a farmers’ market? For hundreds of years, farmers sold their food at open markets.  Before towns had grocery stores, these markets were the only way to…

Community Food
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Peace by Chocolate

Peace by Chocolate is a chocolate company. It is owned by the Hadhad family. The Hadhad family had a chocolate factory in Syria. A bomb destroyed the factory. The family left Syria. They lived in a refugee camp in Lebanon for three years. A new life in Canada In 2016, the Hadhad family moved to…

Business Community
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Secret climbing tree

There’s a big tree in Vancouver. The tree has many branches. Some people climb this tree. Up high, they can see downtown. They can see the mountains, too. The tree is a giant sequoia. Giant sequoias are very wide. They live for hundreds of years. Where is this tree? That’s a secret! Only local people…

Nature
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Make a bird feeder

  Birds have trouble finding food in the winter. You can help birds by making a bird feeder. Pine cones fall from pine trees in the fall and winter. You can use a pine cone to make a bird feeder. What you need:   pine cone string – 8 to 10 inches long peanut butter…

Animals Nature
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Albert Jackson remembered

Albert Jackson was a letter carrier in Toronto. He is thought to be the first Black letter carrier in Canada. Jackson was not a letter carrier at first. In 1882, Jackson got a job as a letter carrier. But Jackson’s co-workers would not train him. He was given a lower job as a hall porter….

History
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Become a Library Champion

The Library Champions Project is a volunteer program in many public libraries in B.C. It is for people who are new to Canada. It is three months long. What do volunteers learn? Library Champions go to four training sessions. They learn about library, settlement and community services. They also work on communication, presentation and outreach…

Community
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Top word of 2022

Merriam-Webster.com is an online dictionary. Every year, the dictionary chooses a top word of the year. Gaslighting was the top word of 2022. The number of times a word is looked up in the dictionary helps decide the word of the year. Searches for ’gaslighting’ increased 1,740 per cent in 2022. What is gaslighting? Gaslighting…

Culture Education
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Difficult returns

December is a busy time for shoppers. Some people like to buy gifts for their friends. Others like to take advantage of the many sales. But, sometimes, people buy things and regret it later. If a person doesn’t want a purchase anymore, they might try to return it. Some returns can be difficult Stores have…

Business Culture
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Prevent kitchen fires

Many people like to cook during the holidays. Fires in the kitchen often start when people leave the kitchen while cooking. Lorraine Carli, vice-president of outreach and advocacy at the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) says, “We know cooking fires can be prevented.” Here is how to stay safe in the kitchen: Stay in the…

Food Health Holidays
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George Chow remembered

Remembrance Day reminds us of those who served for Canada. When the Second World War started, Chinese Canadians did not have the right to vote. Their contribution to Canada’s war efforts helped them gain the right to vote in 1947. George Chow was one of about 600 Chinese Canadians who served in the Second World…

Holidays Life Stories
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Regrow vegetables from scraps

When summer ends you can still grow food. Many vegetables can easily be regrown indoors. Common regrown vegetables are green onions, celery and greens like bok choy. The easiest vegetables to regrow are green onions. Here is what you do: 1. Buy some green onions with roots. 2. Cut off the green tops of the…

Food Nature
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ShakeOut – Drop, Cover and Hold On

International ShakeOut Day is on October 20. On this day, millions of people around the world practise how to stay safe during an earthquake. In B.C., the Great British Columbia ShakeOut will take place at 10:20 a.m. People from across the province will take part in a “Drop, Cover and Hold On” drill. To join,…

Health Nature
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Egg and vegetable scramble

Start your day with a healthy breakfast. A balanced breakfast includes items from the main food groups. This egg and veggie scramble is quick and tasty. It can make four servings. What you need:  6 eggs ¼ cup skim milk (optional) ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper 1 teaspoon oil 1 ½ cups chopped mixed vegetables…

Food Health
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Swimmer finds ring

On August 18, a man was swimming in the Penticton Channel.   He found a ring. It was a man’s wedding ring. There was writing on the ring: “Noel loves Stephanie.” The man gave the ring to the police. The police asked for the owner to claim it.   Noel claimed the ring. He had…

Life Stories
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September is Literacy Month

In B.C., we celebrate Literacy Month. Literacy is important to everyone. This year’s theme is “Literacy connects us!” Get involved! Enter the Literacy Connects Us Contest: Fill in the cloud with words or pictures that describe how literacy connects you at home, at work or in the community. Send your entry to contest@decoda.ca or post…

Uncategorised
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PNE and Playland

What is the PNE? The PNE is a fair. It is held at Hastings Park in Vancouver. Prime Minister Laurier opened the first PNE fair in 1910. The fair is open 17 days a year. It starts the third week in August and ends on Labour Day. Every summer, more than 900,000 people go to…

Animals History
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B.C. Day in August

B.C. Day is the first Monday in August. On this public holiday, people celebrate living in British Columbia.  Many people use the long weekend to travel, enjoy nature or relax with family and friends. According to the United Nations, “B.C. is the best place in the world to learn, live and play.” A few facts…

Culture History Holidays
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What to do in a heat wave

A heat wave is a period of very hot weather that lasts for two or more days. To be called a heat wave, the temperatures must be above the historical averages for an area. Staying in the heat for a long time can be dangerous. It can cause heat-related illnesses like heat stroke. What to…

Health Nature
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Rattlesnake gets a ride in sports car

In June, employees at a car dealership in Vancouver got a surprise. They found a snake in a Ferrari. The dealership called the Wildlife Rescue Association of B.C. Support Centre Helpline. “To our surprise, a photo determined it wasn’t a local Garter snake, but a Northern Pacific Rattlesnake,” Wildlife Rescue posted on Facebook. Employees had…

Animals Nature
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Start running

Summer is a good time to do things outdoors. Running is a fun outdoor thing to do. Running can help improve your health. It is good for your body and mind. Running is free. You can run anywhere. It is also an easy sport to learn. You only need a pair of running shoes! Set…

Health Sports
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What is paddle boarding?

Paddle boarding is a popular water sport. You stand up on a board that is like a surfboard. The shape of the board helps you to keep your balance. You use a paddle to steer and move through the water. Paddle boarding is a good workout. It helps build muscles in your arms, shoulders, stomach…

Sports
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New language added to B.C. Newcomers’ Guide

B.C. is welcoming people from Ukraine to communities across the province. The B.C. Newcomers’ Guide is now available in Ukrainian. The guide has information to help newcomers settle in B.C. They can learn about how to: find a place to live drive in B.C. find a doctor and other medical services get a B.C. Services…

Community
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Biking in B.C.

Biking is one of the best ways to see B.C. You can see mountains, rivers and wildlife. You can stop for a picnic in a park or go for a swim at a beach. Here are some places to see by bike. Stanley Park Seawall Stanley Park is in Vancouver. Ride along the seawall. You…

Sports
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Plant a herb garden

Do you like to use fresh herbs in your cooking? Plant a herb garden in a container. You can put it in a sunny window. Or, you can put it on your deck or patio.  Enjoy fresh herbs all summer!  What you need:  pot with holes in the bottom  potting soil  herbs  trowel  water  What…

Nature
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HealthLink BC 8-1-1

Do you need to talk to someone about a health problem? 8-1-1 is a phone line that is available 24 hours a day. Anyone in B.C. can get free health information and advice over the phone. It is operated by HealthLink BC, a part of the B.C. Ministry of Health. What do I do? Call…

Health
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How to use a nutrition facts table

Nutrition facts tables show the calories and important nutrients in foods. This information can help you compare foods.   Adapted from Canada.ca • Photo: Jade Chan

Food Health
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The little yellow house

This house is famous. It’s called Leslie House. It was built in 1888. The house is in downtown Vancouver. Mr. Leslie was the first owner. He was a carpenter. His family lived there for 60 years. Then, the house was used for business. It was a restaurant for many years. Leslie House is for sale….

History
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