We are seeking match-funding for a partner project with the Toyota Everygreen Foundation to design and install an outdoor classroom and nature-based playground for students & community. Our Outdoor Classroom initiative will optimize the outdoor learning curriculum already in place. The school board has approved the project, and installation will take place in later summer 2015. ALL students from JK to Gr.6 will have access to the space, along with the community at-large. Along with the outdoor classroom itself, part of the initiative includes teacher training and loose-part teaching tools. Our outdoor classroom initiative will bring outdoor learning alive at Centennial Public School. We plan to create a natural area for art, exploration, and nature study. Using natural elements we will create outdoor classroom gathering areas, pathways, art panels, gardening beds (stock tanks), and seating areas. This project impacts several different facets in our community. The primary focus is for educational purposes of ALL students at CPS - the curriculum already includes many outdoor learning activities, and the FDK (full day kindergarten) program specifically has instigated 1-2 hours of outdoor learning each and every day. This outdoor classroom will enhance and support this curriculum, and the Evergreen foundation will be offering workshops and training for CPS teachers to further evolve their outdoor classes.
Naturally, this facet is extended beyond students and school time, to neighbourhood children off of school hours. We hope that families will come together to enjoy the new space as community and neighbours. The increased shade canopy resulting from additional trees will augment their enjoyment of the area and therefore extend time spent benefiting from the natural space of our new and improved outdoor classroom.
Funded by Kitchener-Waterloo, ON (April 2015)