We share an area with the elementary school next door. We are going to turn it into an outdoor classroom that both schools can share and use to collaborate on different projects. Some of our classes participate in activities such as Book Buddies and Kindness Club. We want to have a safe, beautiful area to use that students create, implement, and maintain. We want to add seating, flowers, plants, informational plaques and decorations made from recycled materials. Our middle school students will work together with the elementary students to design and create an area that they can be proud of!
All of the students in my class have Autism and/or Intellectual Disabilities. They love to be outside, and they love working with other kids, so the first thing we'll do is work with our elementary buddies to design a space that is accessible for all. Then we will enlist other classes, such as our shop class, to help create the items we need, such as plaques. Each student will have a job to do based on their talents, abilities, and interests. Students will work together to choose plants and flowers for the area. They will write descriptions of the plants, their needs, and uses. These will be put onto plaques and posted near the plants. Students will also create decorative items from recycled materials, and they will work together to ensure that everyone's work is included.
This project will give both schools an area where they can read, collaborate with others, and learn in a natural environment. Usage of this garden area is open for all classes of both schools, and we believe it will get excellent use. Here in Florida we have beautiful weather much of the year, and it is such a terrific experience for kids when they get outdoors and use all of their senses to learn!