Bridges Elementary's garden helps students' creativity grow - AZEdNews
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Bridges Elementary’s garden helps students’ creativity grow

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  • Michelle Reese/ Higley Unified School District

Bridges Elementary School Students, Teachers And Family Members Work On The Garden At The School. Photo Courtesy Higley Unified School District

Bridges Elementary School students in Higley Unified School District arrived on campus July 23rd to find garden boxes ready to plant vegetables and flowers for all to enjoy and study.

Last year, students elected to be Chief Science Officers looked into exploring scientific project-based learning activities. A school garden offered students a perfect environment for immersing themselves into their biology studies. The groundwork started in the spring.

“Our Chief Science Officers have been instrumental in ensuring Bridges is always improving through implementing campus-wide STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) initiatives. Chief Science Officer students came up with the idea of creating a school garden,” said Jeff Beickel, Principal at Bridges Elementary, which is located in Gilbert.

Beickel sees this project as an avenue for students to grow, learn and lead.

“The beauty of this idea is teachers in all grade levels can tie in real-world learning opportunities with their standards through the use of the garden. I’m looking forward to witnessing our 21st Century learners use this incredible space!” he said.

Students who planned the garden were excited about the legacy being created for future students.

“I love this school and it would be great to see how much the garden has improved since this is my last year. This garden will be what will bring me back to the school,” said Chief Science Officer Jaylen Jones, when he spoke about the garden in May before he finished his sixth-grade year.

Not only did this project spark an interest from Bridges’ students, but also local Boy Scouts.

“I’m most excited to see the visual impact the garden will have on the school, not just tolearn on a piece of paper but visually improve the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) aspect of the school,” said Higley High School Senior and Boy Scout Lorenzo McLean, who participated in putting garden boxes together in the spring.

This fall, Bridges will host a dedication ceremony with students, friends, family, Bridges and HUSD staff members who have been a big influence in the growth of the school.