Stittsville Public School is even closer to moving forward with an outdoor classroom project thanks to two major grants announced in recent weeks.
The project has received a $9,000 grant from the TD Friends of the Environment program, and $2,800 from the City of Ottawa’s Community Environmental Projects Grant Program. That’s in addition to $10,000 already raised by the school’s parent council.
An outdoor classroom is literally just that: a learning space in a natural setting that can include features like gardens, fitness areas, and natural features, along with seating and classroom tools like a chalkboard.
The idea for Stittsville Public School was hatched in the fall of 2015 after local parent councils got together to brainstorm ideas. Two other Stittsville schools (Westwind Public and St. Stephen Catholic) already have outdoor classrooms of their own.
Studies have suggested that there are a number of educational benefits from learning outdoors, as well as emotional, social and physical benefits.
A working group of parents and teachers was formed last fall to put together a plan and start fundraising. Phase 1 of the project is fully funded, and they’re halfway to the fundraising goal for Phase 2.
The original plan was to have the first phase built over the summer, but the project has been delayed pending approvals.
You can read more about the project in this Powerpoint deck: