Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Alternative Practicum Closing Reflections for Alison

We learned so much from these past three weeks with Lauren & Alison's Alternative Practicum in The Orchard Garden.  We are grateful for their ongoing, thought-provoking reflections.  Here are some photos from their visits this week: 

Tupper Neighbourhood Greenway

Mural at Sir Charles Tupper Secondary School

Here is Alison's final reflection:

I’m having a hard time believing that the Orchard Garden practicum is coming to a close. As I’m typing these words, I realize that I would like this enhanced practicum to be extended by another week – which is not a common sentiment for most practicum students. Few teacher candidates receive the opportunity to explore educational practices of interest, as well as see how these practices are being implemented in various schools around the district. This enhanced practicum experience has helped reignite my hope for education growing beyond the traditional classroom setting.
I am so grateful to the many educators and students who welcomed us into their schools to share their knowledge and experiences. This week, we received a tour of the Tupper Neighbourhood Greenway, which is a collaborative project between Sir Charles Tupper Secondary School, Tupper students, the TINGA Community Group, and the City of Vancouver. The primary focus of the Greenway is to be a healing garden for students and community members after the loss of a Tupper student in 2003. The greenspace was designed to make school grounds and the community safer, and the partnership also provides the community opportunities for youth engagement and leadership activities, mentorship to the surrounding elementary schools, and events such as Community Planting Days.
Over the past three weeks, we’ve seen how various garden and greenspaces work as a connection point for community building. It’s a wonderful thing to witness, and so touching to have received invitations to become participating members in these school communities.  I am excited to continue to develop (and hopefully try out!) garden based curriculum, and I am also looking forward to working on other projects with The Orchard Garden throughout the summer – like our Pollination Workshop next Thursday!

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