|One Planet – Ours!|
A Sustainable Schoolyard Comes to the National Mall
Washington, DC: The Friends of Smart Growth and Sustainable Communities, a coalition of national organizations, will install a Sustainable Schoolyard as part of the U.S. Botanic Garden's summer sustainability exhibit, One Planet—Ours! This special outdoor learning environment will demonstrate the multiple benefits of ecological or green schoolyards for education and play. It has been designed by Bay Tree Design, Inc. of Berkeley, CA.
Visitors will learn about the principles of ecological design, interconnected natural systems, the use of natural and recycled building materials and other green building practices, renewable energy systems, environmentally responsible water systems, local wildlife habitats, and edible gardens.
The schoolyard design will also illustrate the ways in which a typical elementary school can use its schoolyard as a rich outdoor classroom, filled with interdisciplinary educational tools that serve curricula ranging from art and music, to science, math, nutrition, healthy living, and community building. It will also include areas designed for outdoor creative play, using natural materials and open-ended play elements that encourage children to be imaginative.
The exhibit is open and free to the public from May 24–October 13, 2008 at 100 Maryland Avenue, SW at the west side of the U.S. Capitol. Click here to view a map of the exhibit layout, and for address information.
Click here to view a video feature on the exhibit by WNBC-TV4 reporter Wendy Rieger.
Friends of Smart Growth and Sustainable Communities include the following organizations: American Farmland Trust, American Planning Association, Concern, Inc., National Association of Realtors®, National Association of Counties, The Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education, The Conservation Fund and the Smart Growth Network. They have formed this coalition with the intent to demonstrate healthy schoolyards as key elements of green, active and sustainable communities.
Friends of Smart Growth and Sustainable Communities would especially like to thank Bay Tree Design, Inc. (www.baytreedesign.com) for developing the concept design for the exhibit and for all their invaluable contributions to its implementation.