Learning moves outside at Fleetwood
Fleetwood’s “Tiger” is excited about the nature garden being prepared behind him.
A new outdoor classroom at Andrew Maier Elementary School is helping students get a hands-on education in environmental science and helping the environment at the same time. The Learning by Nature space, as it’s called, was designed by Berks Nature senior ecologist Larry Lloyd and Andrew Maier Principal Chris Redding. According to an article in the Reading Eagle
, the classroom includes several initiatives designed to give the elementary students, their families and community members access to improved wildlife habitat, immersive education experiences, and exposure to sustainable environmentally responsible school campus management practices.
As part of the project, more than 100 trees and shrubs and nearly 800 native wildflowers and other herbaceous plants were planted in addition to a garden and bee homes. Existing environmental curriculum will be enhanced by the ability to use the outdoor space for observation and learning. The project is projected to reduce maintenance costs, energy use and the carbon footprint of the school and benefit a nearby stream by reducing storm water runoff and encouraging groundwater recharge.