OKEMOS, MI - On May 27, Okemos Public Montessori (OPM) at Central held a ribbon cutting ceremony to unveil their new Butterfly Garden. This project restored a neglected portion of the school’s property by creating a sustainable native environment that also allows for the children to learn about the four stages in the metamorphosis of butterflies.
OPM partnered with Dr. Norm Lownds and Jessica Wright from Michigan State University’s 4-H Children’s Garden in order to complete this project.
Christine Batora, a teacher at OPM, spoke more on the collaboration, “We were able to have this vision with the great support of Dr. Norm Lownds, who is the head of the MSU’s Children’s Garden, and so he helped design the garden and organize it with us.”
This Butterfly Garden will serve as a haven for native pollinators and will include an immersive experience for students to use scientific observation to learn the importance of habitat restoration in the community. The educational experience will be offered to approximately 120-360 students throughout the year.
A portion of the project was paid for through Meridian Township’s green grant program, which awards grants to support green infrastructure projects. Township officials allocated $10,000 in 2022 for green grants to be administered by the Meridian Township Environmental Commission.
“I just want to say thank you to all of the community here in Okemos and Meridian Township, especially after all of the tough previous years that children and teachers have had, and the community itself,” said Batora. “It just feels so good to be together and celebrate something beautiful.”
To learn more about the garden, watch the video below.
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