Adventures in Sustainability and CommunityWritten by Margaret Pegno
What started out as a Peace Week Lunch & Learn, grew into a joint adventure of community and stewardship between our youngest and our oldest students.
During Peace Week, the Friends Academy Upper School Sustainability Committee held a Lunch & Learn and created bird feeders to hang around campus. The bird feeders were constructed by slathering sunbutter on cardboard rolls and sprinkling them with various seeds.
The committee decided the best place to begin hanging the feeders is our two-acre Forest Program located on campus. The Upper School Sustainability Committee buddied up with one to two Playgroup students to hike up to the Forest Program to find the perfect trees to hang their bird feeders and provide a winter meal to our feathered friends.
“In Playgroup we speak about when we go up to the Forest area we are practicing Simplicity and Peace. We practice Simplicity by creating our own fun and learning by discovering things with our own eyes and hands,” noted Playgroup teacher Pam Martocci. “We practice Peace in the Forest when we are walking, seeing, and listening to the birds and wildlife all around us.”
Upon entering the Forest Program, Sustainability Committee Co-Clerks Justin Kelly and Tina Tang held a moment of silence and then instructed the students to find their buddy and a few short trees and bushes to populate with feeders.
“The benefits of cross-divisional interactions are that the young children and the older students get to see our Forest Program through the eyes of the other in the experience that they are having,” Mrs. Martocci said. “The little ones were in awe of the big kids and how they walked on the logs and helped them build with rocks and turn over logs to find worms and bugs.”
Meanwhile, back in the Lower School Science Classroom, additional members of Upper School Sustainability Committee partnered with Lower School Sustainability students to construct even more bird feeders to hang throughout campus.
“The entire experience was about celebrating the simplicity of innocence and taking the time see the space through another’s eyes and appreciate each other,” said Mrs. Martocci.
Photos by: Margaret Pegno/Friends Academy