School gardens are such a terrific resource on so many levels, but it takes work to get one started, to maintain a program, and to hand it over when it’s time for key players move on. Fortunately, there are lots of resources out there to support parents and teachers who value outdoor learning and gardening programs. Read More
The U.S. Botanic Garden’s Season’s Greenings train exhibit this year celebrates National Parks and Historic Places with plant-based sculptures and installations of replicas of famous features of national parks and of buildings and monuments. The exhibit is open through January 2, 2017, including on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day. Get a glimpse of some of the highlights in our photoblog and be sure to see it yourself in person!
The fifth annual NoVA Outside School Environmental Action Showcase (SEAS) brought over 500 students from public schools, private schools and homeschooling groups in Ablemarle County, Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax, and Falls Church to George Mason University to learn and share about environmental stewardship. The event, which took place on April 6, 2016, was put on in partnership with George Mason University Potomac Environmental Research and Education Center. and GMU’s Office of Sustainability. Read More
Loudoun County has created trading cards featuring local farmers! When I saw friends sharing images of these cards – like baseball cards, but of local farmers! – I had to find out the story behind how they came to be.
Tuckahoe Elementary hosted the February Arlington Public Schools (APS) School Garden Meetup with a presentation on bringing the outdoors into the classroom and winterizing an outdoor education program followed by a guided tour of the school’s award-winning Discovery Garden. This April cold snap is keeping these tips relevant well into spring! Read More
Students from around Fairfax County rose early on Saturday morning to prepare their culinary masterpieces for judges and for the public to taste at the Real Food for Kids Culinary Challenge and Wellness Expo. After the competition was completed, these middle and high school students and other attendees got to participate in two workshop sessions before prizes and awards were handed out. My children are only in elementary school, but our whole family had a lot of fun and learned a great deal about food and about cooking at the event. Read More
The fourth annual Grow Your Health Festival of Gardening, Local Food & Wellness will be held on Saturday, March 5, 2016 at Fairfax High School. the event offers classes on gardening, nutrition and wellness. Topics to be covered include how to start gardens, source better quality food, and learn holistic techniques to achieve better health. A family-friendly event, the Grow Your Health Festival offers several hours of supervised, age-appropriate activities for children, including gardening classes, kids’ yoga, indoor recess and quiet floor play. From 10:00 to 4:00, parents can take advantage of up to one hour of free childcare for children ages two to ten provided by Play, Work or Dash, a new mom-owned co-working space with childcare in Vienna.
Sometimes we need to gather all the great health and wellness event information in one place to make sure we keep track of it all! We have lots of great events and classes listed in the Mindful Healthy Life calendar, and we post new things as we learn about them on the Mindful Healthy Life Facebook page and on our Twitter feed @MindfulHealthy. But here is a quick and handy list of some of the bigger not-to-be-missed events coming up this winter and spring.
The botanically-created and inspired Season’s Greenings train exhibit at the U.S. Botanic Garden, on display through January 3, has outdone itself with this year’s theme: “Pollination Station.” A gorgeous tribute to bees, butterflies, and bats and the leafy and petal-heavy beauties they pollinate, the plant-created world is as magical and whimsical as ever. As the images in our photoblog attest, the exhibit is a must-see for all local parents, especially those who want to inspire in their children a love of nature and a respect for all the world’s interdependent ecosystems. Read More
Since the April 2015 Growing Green Schools event, parents and school staff in Arlington Public Schools have made progress in school gardening efforts. Started in June 2015 and now running the first Monday of most months, the School Garden Meetups give parents, teachers, staff and community members an opportunity to share knowledge, discuss successes and challenges, and see different school garden and outdoor learning spaces around the county.
These are volunteer-led opportunities for interested parties to learn from one another about site-specific efforts around the county. In addition to this group, APS also has a Superintendent’s Advisory Committee on Sustainability, which was launched in 2012 with a team of volunteers from around the community. Now, there is new momentum toward funding a position to support all of these efforts. One of the just-released recommendations of the Science Advisory Committee is to “provide funding and support for one full-time Sustainability and Outdoor Learning Coordinator (SOLC) starting with the 2016-2017 school year.” Read More