Contributed by Beth Lemire, Lower School Science Specialist
The Planeteers is a small group of Lower School students with a special interest in the outdoors and want to explore more of it. Students who join this group need to be committed to and passionate about the earth and its beings. During meetings, they are educated about current issues of the environment, and deep discussions take place. Each student continues to evolve as stewards of the earth over the school year. They choose issues to pursue in a way that is most comfortable for them. Some children choose to present workshops to younger classes; some choose to take on issues that could be improved upon at D-E, such as using non-toxic cleaners in the cafeteria; and some Planeteers help maintain our beautiful garden. Being a Planeteer gives these children the skills to make positive change, speak out for significant causes and discover themselves in a more meaningful way through their love of the outdoors.
On March 19, the Planeteers took a trip to the Pfeiffer Center in Chestnut Ridge, NY. The children had been working all year on teaching and learning about environmental issues, and this was the Planeteers’ cumulative event. While at the Center, the children dug deep into the world of composting, and used ratios for making healthy potting soil. They also learned about the care and grooming of draft horses; beekeeping and the usefulness of pollinators; and how to properly use a variety of hand tools in the garden. All of these things were done with total involvement of the children as hands-on activities. It was certainly a joyful time of learning while outdoors on this beautiful biodynamic/organic farm.
For more information on the Pfeiffer Center, visit pfeiffercenter.org.