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Grantee Blog 2020

Planting Tulips in the Sensory Garden

The Center for Prevention and Counseling is a Community Partner and works collaboratively with Merriam Avenue Elementary School. This organization encourages children to pledge to be Drug Free and make healthy choices in their lives.  During Red Ribbon Week, a week in October nationally recognized to promote a Drug Free lifestyle, the Center for Prevention donated 100 red tulip bulbs for the students here at Merriam Avenue.  As the students planted the tulip bulbs in the Sensory Garden they discussed how healthy choices can create a better future.

Each child planted a tulip and shared one healthy habit that they can continue or adopt for themselves.  Students were reminded that hard work and dedication towards these goals is what keeps them focused on attaining them.  In the spring, the students will again visit the Sensory Garden and reflect on the steps that they took and evaluate how close they are to achieving their goals.

This warm November weather has given Merriam Avenue students the opportunity to continue activities in the Sensory Garden.  This space has been incredibly beneficial for our students who have opted to do the remote segment of their day in the gymnasium.  Students have been leaving the gymnasium in small groups to take a break in the Sensory Garden.  While the garden is still under construction the space has significant therapeutic value in allowing students to be outdoors in nature.  We have been discussing plans with the students and getting input regarding the next construction phase of the garden which will take place in the spring.

About the Grantee

Merriam Avenue Elementary School

Merriam Avenue Elementary School is located in Northwest New Jersey. The mission of the Newton Public Schools is to educate the whole child. We believe parents, teachers, support staff and citizen's must partner in order to help children achieve their highest potential. Therefore we organize ourselves as community schools.