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Greening School Grounds Evaluation Rhea Dawn Mahar Nicole Pettipas Emily Gregus Jorge Soto August 2004.

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Presentation on theme: "Greening School Grounds Evaluation Rhea Dawn Mahar Nicole Pettipas Emily Gregus Jorge Soto August 2004."— Presentation transcript:

1 Greening School Grounds Evaluation Rhea Dawn Mahar Nicole Pettipas Emily Gregus Jorge Soto August 2004

2 Introduction  School Ground Greening – process of bringing native species habitats and interesting, stimulating learning spaces to schoolyards  Non-profit catalyst  Continuous interest  Mobile populations  More diverse support

3 Goal and Objectives Goal: Assess eleven years of projects in the Halifax Regional School Board Objectives: What has been done, how it came to be, how has it survived, who is using the space and how, what are the positives and negatives of this, and what are the needs to sustain a landscape for learning?

4 Characteristics of Survey 49 Questions Conducted July 27-August 10 1 1/2 hours per interview

5 Person to person 22 Schools and 27 People All had greening projects and were in Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM)

6 How/Why Projects Determined Projects started: For educational purposes Beautification To preserve/utilize an already existing green area. In memoriam of a person connected to school

7 Schools chose specific projects by: Consulting with students, teachers, and their Parent-Teacher Association Through surveys, garden clubs, newsletters, and work shops Projects were an average of 4 to 5 years The oldest 11 years old The youngest 1 year old.

8 Planters Gardens Trees Hedges Benches Outdoor classrooms Trails Common Projects

9 Atlantic View, Lawrencetown

10 St.Catherine’s Elementary, Halifax

11 Funding and Assistance PTA fundraisers and donations Tree Canada Canada Trust Evergreen Ecology Action Center Local Councilors School funds Local companies

12 Maintenance and Management Average survival rate for trees-80% and shrubs-90% Performed by: Parent volunteers, students (through greening clubs), teachers, Greening committees Usually one person takes charge

13 Educational Aspects Science-Experiential English/Literacy-Inspiration Math-Measurement Phys. Ed.-Reason to be outside Art-Inspiration Drama-Setting

14 Have not incorporated into schedule of classes formally. Up to teachers Construction of outdoor classrooms does not necessarily mean more classes outside Educational Aspects, continued

15 Robert Jamieson Elementary, Oyster Pond

16 Atlantic Memorial Elementary, White’s Lake

17 Frequency of Maintenance Done on as-needed basis or not at all (summer time) Often depends on quality of leadership with projects During school year, usually some sort of schedule. Either greening clubs or through classes.

18 Community Involvement: Garden parties/Events to include community Newsletters and notices Local politicians-Come to events occasionally and give donations. No big role. School Board Elected Reps.- Not usually involved School Board Staff-Not involved, but support (verbal support and permission to install projects) Municipality – Potential for partnership

19 To Encourage Use of Outdoors: Inservicing for staff Activity sheets – lesson plans Guest Speakers Support of administration and staff-Time and interest Overall incorporation of it into curriculum Maintenance

20 Sustainability of Projects Most still exist Maintenance is a problem Usually one person managing project who relies on volunteer help that comes and goes. Survival of projects depends on maintenance (but most are surviving)

21 Benefits: Better appearance of school Pride in school by children and community Respect for school yard and nature Learning experience Awareness of outdoors Team work Different way for students to get involved Conclusions

22 Problems: Damage from snow plows, weather and vandalism Maintenance Lack of long-term interest/leadership Administration changes

23 Recommendations Hire students to perform maintenance Give teachers more support so they feel more comfortable going outside Task force to find workable programs - Summer maintenance - More permanent support; Board, HRM (municipality), Department of Education

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