Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION
School celebrates more playground trees
Latest phase of ILCS playground project complete
Staff, students and parents at Island Lakes Community School have branched out their efforts to beautify the school’s playground.
The school recently celebrated the completion of the latest stage of the ILCS Playground Enhancement Project, which includes six more fenced-in trees on the grounds of the Island Shore Boulevard-based school.
The ongoing project has spanned the last four years and has been paid for by tireless fundraising efforts within the school’s community and contributions from FedEx and TreeCanada, with future funding from The Winnipeg Foundation recently secured.
One key organizer said the project — which now includes 24 trees — will enhance the outdoor, educational experience for students.
"It’s wonderful. Last year, on the first day after some trees were planted, I went for a walk and saw an art class painting them," said Faith Roper, playground chair of the Island Lakes Parent Advisory Council.
"Before, there was no shade whatsoever for the kids and now there is. The plan has been to plant strong, durable trees to provide much-needed shade and a place for the kids to gather."
"Next school year, the plan is to put some benches in place, so they have somewhere to sit and chat," she added.
Roper noted the trees at the front of the school have been planted in a circular way to potentially accommodate the school’s ultimate playground vision — an outdoor classroom.
"Our goal in the future is to have a place to attract birds, butterflies and ladybugs and provide a great educational experience," she said.
Roper’s son, Andrew, 13, said the project has already enhanced his outdoor experience — and helped cool his heels.
"We’re trying to make the park a much better place and more aesthetically-pleasing," he said. "There’s definitely more shade now, which helps when it’s really hot and humid outside."
Principal Darcy Cormack said the growth of the playground project showcases the strength of the school’s community.
"This truly is a community school, as the community uses the playground outside of school hours," she said, noting the fundraising drive has included numerous hot lunches — such as pizza — for the students.
Cormack said the project will provide educational opportunities for the students, noting a kindergarten class recently did a study about the seasonal growing cycle of trees, focusing on roots.
For more information, visit www.lrsd.net/schools/island.
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(1 of 11 articles for this week)05/22/2013 1:00 AM 0
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