Home > Children, Community, Environment, Montessori, Playground, School, Summer, Values and Ethics > Evergreen Hosts Green Symposium

Evergreen Hosts Green Symposium

Plant More Trees

Jump Stumps

Originally printed in the GreenWheaton Newsletter, May 2012

Evergreen School is hosting their second Green Symposium on May 19.  The program is designed for the school’s families and will feature class performances, hands-on environmental activities and representatives from local green advocacy organizations. John DeMarchi, the Head of School says, “It is a great opportunity for the school to promote environmentally sustainable practices by our families.”

This year’s Symposium honors the second anniversary of their prize-winning Rain Garden.  The Garden was won an honor at the 25th annual Keep Montgomery County Beautiful (KMCB) award ceremony held by The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) last fall.

The contest was designed to encourage those in Montgomery County to undertake landscape activities and neighborhood beautification projects that improve the overall appearance of the County.  MCDOT supports beauty without toxicity by encouraging landscaping projects that utilize conservation measures which keep pesticides and fertilizers out of local streams and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay.

Evergreen’s landscaping project involved transforming its playground into a sustainable rain garden using only native plant species. The new landscape design prevents polluted run-off rain water from flowing into the storm water system and eventually into the Chesapeake Bay by channeling it from the school’s parking lot through a filtration swale and catch basin. Over the course of a year, pounds of pollutants are kept out of creek and river systems.

Mr. DeMarchi says, “The natural elements on the playground enable children to have intimate encounters with rain drops, earthworms and dandelions.  The playground does more than provide a place for safe, physical play. It  exposes children to natural elements—such as rocks, logs, water and other features that stimulate the senses.” As Maria Montessori understood, we learn directly from our senses—thus sensual experiences are the foundation for learning.

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