By Linda White
With trowels in hand, first and second grade students of Davis School recently learned the basics in Bulb Planting 101, and put their newly acquired skills to work planting 350 spring-blooming bulbs near the entrance to the Davis School building and throughout the Davis campus.
Davis teachers Anita Petrocelli, Kim Marino, and Kevin Smaldone coordinated the integration of the science/social studies work with their first and second grade classes.
Students learned about the life cycle of bulbs, how to plant and protect the bulbs, the importance of documenting where the bulbs were planted, and made journal entries to capture their experience. The young gardeners and their teachers will be keeping their eyes on the area over the coming months, eagerly awaiting the blossoming of the bulbs. Davis students will continue their gardening work in the spring.
Priscilla Williams of Pumpkin Brook Organic Gardening, located in Shirley, MA, generously donated the 350 Hokus Crocus, Daffodil, Allium, and Grape Hyacinth bulbs and also naturally treated the bulbs to make them as animal proof as possible.
Williams worked with BEST Green Team Committee co-chairs Kate Ford and Anuja Rotella who made the garden areas ready for planting with the assistance of Davis custodian Lucas Tadeo and parent volunteers.
Working in small groups, each student chose three bulbs, dug a hole for each bulb, added a bit of growth enhancer, planted the bulb, and then plotted the location of their bulbs on a color coded map. It was a beautiful afternoon for planting, providing students with an al fresco opportunity to journal about the planting process, the bulbs they planted, and how they enjoyed the experience. Later in the week, second graders continued planting bulbs down the driveway and around the Davis School sign. Additional classrooms will continue their tradition of planting spring annuals as part of Earth Day Celebrations in April 2017.
Be on the lookout for all the outdoor changes happening at Davis School. In addition to planting bulbs at Davis last month, the BEST Green Committee assisted in the clean-up efforts of the newly relocated Davis School Garden. There is also a new addition to the playground landscape. Over the summer, second grade teachers Susan Nocera and Amy Corssino submitted a $1,300 grant request to the Bedford Education Foundation (BEF) for a Buddy Bench, a clearly marked bench designed for students who may have difficulty navigating the process of finding playmates, or finding the confidence to join in, at recess. The bench provides students the opportunity to both reach out for help and give other students the experience of offering themselves as a friend. From all reports, the fostering of friendships on the playground has been a positive and enriching experience.