Sustainable Greenspace for Environmental Study

Short Pump Middle

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This project expands and transforms the existing Puma Greenspace into a beautiful and sustainable outdoor learning space for the entire school to use for cross-curricular environmental lessons. The goal is to involve as many teachers and students as possible in the creation of this space to truly make it a source of pride for the school community.

Part of the transformation includes metal troughs which become raised beds to be maintained by our Student Garden Club. We have had great success in getting our garden club active this year despite the pandemic. Enrollment is up from 10 members in 2020-21 to 23 members in 2021-22. The garden club will be planting in the spring and is responsible for maintenance of the garden.

Our Crafts classes studied native Virginia plants and used recycled materials to create mosaic stepping stones to decorate the garden.

Students have been using the Vernier weather systems equipment to capture weather data around the school. Science teachers are excited about lessons using solar panels, weather sensors, and drones.

Technology Student Association (TSA) students recently broke ground for the pergola that they are building. The pergola will house solar panels to help students learn about alternative energy sources. This pergola was designed, budgeted, and will be completely built by students!

We are very excited to have cross curricular activities so everyone can enjoy the greenspace and use it to its full potential.

Funding Amount: $11,000

Number impacted: 1,015

Grant recipients: Laura van Bylandt-Innovative Learning Coach, Tara Hunter-Teacher & Brock Snyder

“Through the grant writing process, we worked collaboratively with teachers across multiple disciplines from Family Consumer Sciences, to Science, Health and PE, Art, and Music!”  Laura van Bylandt, Innovative Learning Coach