On Wednesday, June 7 at 4:30 p.m., join the NoVA Outside School-Age Green Education (SAGE) Committee for a Meet-up to explore the Outdoor Learning and Community Connections at Belle View Elementary School in Alexandria.
Belle View has 22 learning stations, including a Shade Garden, No Mow Insect Meadow, Vernal Pool Garden and much more! Each learning station offers a chance to study a unique habitat, creates a teaching opportunity, and provides a resource for the school. Through community involvement and fundraising, the school has been able to expand their gardens each year. Most recently, they have undertaken wetland restoration involving students as well as local, state, and federal park authorities. But their outdoor learning doesn’t stop on the school grounds. Through training with the National Park Service, they are able to take field trips into Dyke Marsh along the Potomac, as well as walking field trips to the nearby marshland. The school is excited to continue their neighborhood exploration in a wooded area next to the school that is being developed with walking trails. With so much work done on creating the outdoor spaces, the focus is now shifting to encourage teacher and student use of the garden spaces for instruction.
Come join Carolyn Bush, a teacher and the coordinator of the Outdoor Classroom Committee, for a tour and Q&A Session and discussion of successes, challenges, and continued upkeep. Get ideas, learn about how they tapped into local resources and connected with park authorities, and share ideas about getting students outside and into their communities.