by Breshna Wardak

For the first time, Ms. Nora May is making a garden with the Environmental Science and Life Skills students. For three years now, all the teachers have spoken about creating another resourceful garden other than the Monarch Waystation butterfly garden outside the science hallway, so Ms. May took the lead with Ms. Sherrie Merrell and others to get it started. The garden is located across from the preschool entrance and fenced all around.

“The main goal is to provide an organic, environmentally friendly learning space for all of our Park View students, especially those who need more hands-on experiences to develop occupational and life skills and to learn the English language,” said Ms. May. Other people who had a helpful hand is Mr. Zangla and the PEER students. Plenty of community partners have volunteered help as in Sterling Home Depot and the Virginia Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners. Although, LCPS School Nutrition Services helped provide training and supplies. Some classes benefit from the garden as in the environmental classes for experiencing the nature.

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Mr. Zangla was one of the teachers that offered big help to this project. “This is a good hands-on experiment where you actually learn and create new products,” said Mr. Zangla. This experiment has helped a lot of his own students understand the purpose of nature.

The preparation of the garden started at the end of school last year. Altogether, Ms. May started out with $6,000 through funding from grants, Team Depot, and the PTSA. Volunteers and the Master Gardeners helped to start it out.

We’re hoping to make a small business out of what we raise as well,” said Ms. May. The garden was created with team work and couldn’t have happened with just an individual person. The community provided as much as they could to help start something useful within it.