Dearborn Park Elementary School A Forest and Wetland of Learning

Seattle, Washington 98108

Dearborn Park Elementary School A Forest and Wetland of Learning

Dearborn Park Elementary School: A Forest (and Wetland) of Learning Professional Review and Guide

"There isn’t much open space between Beacon Hill and the Rainier Valley, so Dearborn Park Elementary School’s outdoor “classrooms” offer refreshing alternatives to pavement for students and visitors alike. The Dearborn Park Children’s Forest and Alder Wetland began as science projects and now provide community access to two inviting habitats. For many years, “Don’t kick the ball into the woods!” was all Dearborn Park students knew of the largely deciduous forest on the school property’s north side.

In 1995, an innovative science curriculum that focuses on hands-on environmental education was the impetus for students to start investigating the woods rather than avoiding them. Soon children were seeing the forest for the trees. After hours of removing invasive plants and plotting and planting their own “baby forests,” students now regard the woodland with fondness and a protective sense of pride."

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