High School Special Education Students Connect with Nature
On Monday, November 5th, High School Special Education students at American School of The Hague (ASH) started a new project together with teachers Ms Le Grand and Mr O’Murchu. Not so long ago, Mr O’Murchu applied for a ‘Contributions to ASH’ grant from the PTO - an annual chance for teachers and staff to receive some funds for special projects that haven’t been budgeted for. After this was approved, Mr O’Murchu coud purchase some bird feeders in different shapes and forms, hang them up in the ASH garden (he can see them from his classroom’s windows) and arrange a few bags with seeds.
Once these all was arranged, High School Special Education students were excited to be part of this nature-based project and to contribute to the school’s closest wildlife. During the first day, they visited the different parts of the ASH garden where the bird feeders are located and they started taking the bird feeders down, filling them up with new seeds and hanging them back up in their places. Sometimes it was challenging because they are hanging quite high in a beautiful wooden structure or from the (underside of the roof) ceiling, but the students managed to do this independently and in a very timely manner. Also, it seems that other High School students will get involved in this project soon, as they will create new artwork to decorate the wooden structures in the garden.
Activities like this proved to be beneficial for all of those involved; the students and teachers are able to chat about a shared interest, they are doing something positive and taking responsibility for the birds food source builds confidence in the students, and it also provides enjoyment and contributes to improved health and wellbeing of the students and teachers in their learning environment. Be sure to stop and take a look at these bird feeders, maybe even spotting a bird enjoying something to eat, and remembering that this small object is symbol for a larger movement for wellbeing, environmental consciousness and mindful collaboration.