Nightingale Middle School is located in the Cypress Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. We are fortunate to be located in such a beautiful part of town that overlooks both downtown and the LA River. We are not so fortunate when it comes to the landscaping of our school. Most of our school is covered in black top with a section of astroturf reserved for Physical Education purposes. We are in the process of proposing a green space on campus, so that our students can experience the opportunity of becoming stewards of our school environment. We currently perform quarterly campus beautification days where students participate in helping clean the school and even painting murals around our campus, but we would love for our students to have a green space that they can tend to as a learning environment and a communal space where students can seek natural beauty right on our own campus.
Our vision is to create a green space that supports multiple uses and functions.
Our project seeks to create a green space where students can tend a garden. The garden would have a variety of plants, most importantly including plants native to our Southern California ecosystem.
Our students will also be learning about green architecture. They will have a large part in brainstorming ideas for design as they learn more about what architectural designs will help sustain this space. Our students will be specifically learning about greywater systems. As they learn more about this technology, they will contribute to the design by coming up with ideas on how we can collect greywater from our own school to sustain plant growth.
Finally, we hope to build a mini amphitheater within the green space. The green space's main function would support learning. The space would be open to the whole school for classes to take place in. It would be a zone for interdisciplinary learning to take place. A history teacher might bring their students to come learn about the history of the landscape of our very own neighborhood, while a math teacher might bring their students to learn more about ratios and the importance of keeping track of the ratios between various plant species in order to keep the native garden healthy and diverse.