500 students in Grades K-4 from Rogers International Magnet School in Stamford, Connecticut
- To add Fall blooming species to the existing meadows in this very unique, award-winning schoolyard habitat.
- To engage Rogers International School students in their schoolyard habitat.
- To raise awareness about planting native plants that are both wildlife-friendly and attractive in gardens.
- To promote the Audubon At Home initiative that is growing in Connecticut.
Access to a schoolyard habitat will provide all children at the school with access to nature on a daily basis and help them understand the connections between making healthy choices for themselves and for the environment. Activities will build skills in inquiry, observation, and math using experiential techniques, enabling children to be more successful at school. They will have the opportunity to work with adults, play leadership roles and make positive decisions by participating in the Garden Stewardship committee. Family education activities will provide opportunities for families to nurture and support children’s learning and encourage families to make healthy choices at home.
Place-based nature education is critical to the development of an environmentally aware citizenry. At a time when passive indoor activities and restrictions on outdoor play dominate children’s out-of-school time, youngsters have little direct experience in nature. There is an urgent need for place-based learning about the natural world, particularly in urban areas. Richard Louv documented the nationwide epidemic of “nature deficit disorder,” linking lack of nature exposure to rise in obesity, attention disorders, and depression. The American Association for the Advancement of Science urges teachers to take science out of the textbook and into reality.