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Building gardens at Mountain View Christian School

Mountain View Christian School, 305 Fleming St., South Williamsport, received the Healthy to Learn Grant, from Adventist Whole Health Network, to design and create a garden during the spring of the school year.

The garden would include raised vegetable beds, a butterfly and prayer garden and an outdoor learning classroom. The project was on hold due to the governor’s state order to close schools due to COVID-19. Since March, Jennifer Miller, principal, and the Mountain View Christian School staff encouraged students during their daily Zoom calls. During this time students made their own raised garden beds, planted plants around their homes and enjoyed the outdoors.

As Lycoming County entered the green phase of reopening, school had concluded and the grant funds were still not used to complete the grant project.

Miller enlisted the help of students and their families to make the project a reality after reevaluating the design to make an outdoor classroom for students during the 2020/2021 academic year.

The design includes a butterfly garden, birdbath area, ground-level vegetable garden and a tree area. The original benches for the garden will be used as convertible benches that can be turned into benches with table tops. The raised vegetable beds have been enlarged to hold more vegetables.

The project’s construction began June 19 and the supplies were brought to the school, the soil was tilled, raised beds were built, mulch was scheduled for delivery and the school’s families assisted in building the new gardens.

Students painted birdhouses and helped create the raised garden beds, spread mulch, planted vegetables and assembled the benches. This project not only has put an emphasis on gardening but also was a STEAM and community outreach program.

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