Outdoor classroom provides space to connect with nature

Students and guests happily donned waterproof coats and boots to celebrate the grand opening of the new outdoor classroom at Cove Cliff Elementary.

Located at the southeast corner of the North Vancouver school, near a stream and forested area, the dedicated learning space features strategically placed stones and logs that students can explore and sit on. At the heart of the classroom is a concrete table large enough for two classes to gather around and connect with their natural surroundings.

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At the rainy opening ceremony last month, the school’s aboriginal support worker Henry Schooner beat his drum and sang a song. A ribbon cutting followed.

In a newsletter to parents, the school gives thanks to the many people who contributed to the outdoor classroom: the PAC, parents, landscape architect, contractor, school district staff, and many volunteers who arranged stones and logs, shoveled wood chips, and raised money over the years.

While the outdoor classroom is now open for learning, the school still has plans to acquire a portable shelter and a rolling white board. There are also plans for outgoing Grade 7 students to dress up the concrete table with decorative tilework.

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