P.S. 110 Garden Renovation
|Project Lead:||P.S. 110K PTA INC|
|Project Partners:||Greenpoint Eco-Schools, Alive Structures, Serge Drouin Architecture|
|Project Location:||Next to Public School 110, The Monitor School, 124 Monitor Street|
In 2018, through a competitive process, P.S. 110’s Parent Teacher Association (PTA) was awarded $83,724 in GCEF funding to renovate a 6,000 square feet playground next to P.S. 110, The Monitor School, with planters filled with native trees and vines to attract pollinators, raised garden beds to grow vegetables, and seating for students and the Greenpoint community to enjoy new green open space.
August 2018: The garden design has been finalized and planters and trees have been ordered and should be on site by mid-October, with soil and plants arriving shortly after that. Installation will take place in late October or early November. A new hose bib was installed in early August, assuring easy watering for the garden. Tree stump seats and raised plant beds have also arrived.
On September 5th(the first day of school), P.S. 110 PTA representatives tabled at the “Coffee, Tea and Tears” event to inform parents about the garden renovation and to recruit volunteers. On September 17th teachers, administrators and staff were given an Introduction to the future garden. A bulb planting event with students and parent volunteers is planned for mid-November.
April 2019: The P.S. 110 garden team, comprised of school administrators, teachers and parents has completed the majority of their GCEF-funded garden: including 15 vine planters, 8 extra-large tree planters, 12 large planters, 15 native vines, 8 native trees, 12 native shrubs, and 300 native perennials.
A greening committee, comprised of 39 P.S. 110 parent garden volunteers, meets monthly to help ensure the support and sustainability of the garden. Future meetings will discuss summer maintenance as well as programming for the 2019-20 school year. Over 500 students received hands-on garden introduction, and 45 teachers and staff attended an informative garden introduction workshop. 2 garden training sessions took place, with a total of 15 parents in attendance. The greening committee will continue to conduct parent trainings in the spring.
On November 11, 2018, the gardening team hosted a community bulb-planting event, attended by 30 members of the community who planted over 400 bulbs in the garden. In November, December, and January, P.S. 110’s science teacher held science classes in the garden, involving all 550+ students attending the school. Approximately 90 pre-K children continue to meet in the garden on a weekly basis, weather permitting. Several other classes have used the garden to create art and poetry, or just to provide students with a change of scenery.
In February of 2019, work continued to create two separate greening resource library collections that will be used as tools for teaching and promoting environmental literacy to students, and will also act as a resource for teachers and parents. Suggestions are being collected from parents, teachers, staff, and administration for books to create the first “greening” resource library, housed in the basement of P.S. 110. This library will be used as a resource for teachers, staff and parents to teach and promote environmental literacy with topics ranging from composting, rain catchment systems, urban gardening social justice and climate change. In addition, a “greening” section in the student library is being created with similar topics covered at an age appropriate level.
P.S. 110’s PTA garden programing resumed in March with the “Sowing Seeds in the Garden” program for all 1st grade students and their parents which focused on the process of how seeds become plants. In April, 5th graders participated in a “Spring Cutback” program and learned about the costs and benefits of cutting back old growth in urban gardens. The entire school will participate in a “Fertilizing and Mulching” program in May, learning about the importance of soils content and how to augment it both naturally and with the assistance of additives. And in June, the last program of the year will be on “Watering” to coincide with the completion of the garden’s rain catchement system.
A ribbon cutting ceremony and open house event to celebrate the garden’s renovation is being planned for June 10th.
A Tale Of Two Potential Parks (Williamsburg Patch, October 11, 2018)