We believe that environmental education supports students in growing their connections to the natural world, which sustains us all. When students appreciate their environment they continue wondering and learning throughout their lives. They become conscientious citizens and stewards of the earth. Our unique gardening program is an environmental science model which emphasizes sustainability and resourcefulness in harmony with nature.
All Cottonwood School students participate in environmental education one to two hours per week led by our Environmental Education and Garden Director, Vanessa Barela. Our classes offer students diverse, science-based experiences which include, but are not limited to:
- Care and feeding of chickens.
- Soil improvement and composting.
- Planting, harvesting and sampling vegetables, herbs, flowers and fruit.
- Orchard and fruit tree harvesting.
- Beekeeping, solitary bee habitat, bee forage and insect appreciation
- A school Grower’s Market which reinvests the surplus back into the program.
The Cottonwood School Environmental Program and Garden is a certified Wildlife Habitat in the National Wildlife Federation's network of mini-refuges. Because of the school's conscientious planning, landscaping and sustainable gardening, wildlife may find quality habitat, food, water, cover and places to raise their young.