Planting for the future of Drummond Central School's outdoor education program (2019) proved to be a nature connected community event. Working with Drummond Central School's students, parents, teachers and administration, the Table's Community Garden, Good Food in Schools and After-School program coordinators, alongside Algonquin College Early Childhood Educators, UCDSB and some of the most extraordinary gardeners/ permaculturalists in the county confirmed that this nature connected community can gather to work together to diversify the outdoor classroom on the elementary school playground.
Planting edible and medicinal perennial flora, trees and shrubs in Cardinal Direction gardens to assist in providing outdoor education focal points in the north, south, east and west corners of the playground. A beautiful day was had with all who participated to share their creative flare when planting each cardinal direction perennial garden design. Mureille Lapointe offered opening words of gratitude to begin the day and shared her Anishinaabe perspective with the entire school community.
The school playground has a beautiful annual garden planted by children and parent volunteers (Donna Mae) which is now accompanied by 4 perennial gardens of medicinal and edible flora alongside shrubs and trees to diversify the ecology on the playground. This is phase 1 of 3 phases. A natural pathway and outdoor classroom structure will be incorporated into the playground's outdoor classroom design throughout 2019.
After the tree planting day event, DCS invited parents and children to explore the newly designed playground and try their hands-on activities outdoors in a Parent and Child Outdoor Learning Workshop. I appreciate being included in this essential venture to bring children and curriculum outdoors.
The Drummond Central School community is exceptional in making outdoor education a priority to help the students thrive!
I am very grateful to be a part of this process of providing children and adults the opportunity to connect in nature while engaging in their exploratory inquiry and simple fun-loving learning opportunities.