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Bishop Seabury's Protected Outdoor Learning Habitat construction is underway!

Elizabeth Schultz Environmental Fund Grants make a difference for educational programs
Posted Monday September 14, 2020

In 2019, Bishop Seabury Academy was awarded a $5,000 Elizabeth Schultz Environmental Fund grant to build a protected outdoor learning space. Despite the delays caused by COVID-19, work is nearing completion!

From the Bishop Seabury grant report:

"During the summer of 2020, both the fence was installed and the large hole for the pond was excavated by BHS Construction. On August 31st, Reed Dillon Landscaping started the detail work of sculpting the terraces within the pond to allow for the appropriate height that the plants and hard-scaping need to accommodate the aquatic livestock and natural habitat. After that is done, Eagle Scout students from Seabury will be helping with the landscaping as part of a required project that they must fulfill to become an Eagle Scout. We are on schedule to have the Protected Outdoor Learning Habitat completed by October 1, 2020.

The Ecology and Organismal Studies class will routinely test the water quality and presence of macroinvertabrates as a means of understanding the conceptual questions about both ecology and evolution. The practice and lab work of interacting with the Protected Outdoor Learning Habitat will serve to stimulate independent student projects, create the opportunity to compare the pond's outcomes to that of other area lakes and water sources, and embed the knowledge and understanding of the pond's 'life' as its own ecosystem and its impact on the environment. As the Covid-19 restrictions allow, we will work with students from the area public schools, Eagle Scouts and other community members to involve them in projects and the space as appropriate.

We are delighted that Seabury students that are Eagle Scouts will be involved in this project. Becoming an Eagle Scout can take several years, with the final three to six months being the most intensive. Part of the requirements is to complete an Eagle Project, which is an opportunity for Scouts to demonstrate leadership while working on a specific project that benefits the community. To start, the Scout meets with their troop's Eagle advancement advisor to begin the process of approval for the project. Before and during the course of landscaping the Protected Outdoor Learning Habitat the Scout maintains documentation about the entire process of the project as well as the work details as it is being completed. Once the Scout completes all the requirements of becoming an Eagle Scout, including an Eagle Project, the process continues with the Eagle Board of Review and an application being submitted at the national level. After everything is approved there is The Eagle Court of Honor ceremony honoring the troop's newest Eagle Scouts."

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