Habitat Restoration with Mira Vista School’s Inspired Environmentalists

smile (2)“I hope the bees like these flowers!” exclaimed Rennae, a third grade student from Mira Vista School in Richmond. Students spent a wonderful day in Alvarado Park planting native flowering plants and caring for their local Wildcat Creek. They were very excited to walk to the creek from their school! As they got closer to the creek a student named Jawon commented, “Look! There’s the creek, I can hear it too!”

Jeff McKenna from East Bay Regional Parks District and KIDS for the BAY Instructor John Greiling organized the creek restoration project. Every student planted a native perennial flower, mulched it and watered it. Third grade student Rennae explained, “We are spreading mulch to keep in moisture.” A total of 62 plants were planted and the two plants selected for the project, Penstemon Heterophyllus and Grindelia Hirsutula, have blue and yellow flowers – the same colors as Mira Vista School!

Students enjoyed the opportunity to take action for the creek and teachers were glad to get new ideas on how to use the local watershed habitat as a science teaching resource. Third grade teacher Rachel McLachlan said, “I am excited to bring my class to this spot next year and show them the great work we did. We could also start a new planting site next year!”

This is the third year for the KIDS for the BAY School Wide Watershed Action Program at Mira Vista School. This program was funded by the Dean Witter Foundation and NOAA B-WET and has provided academic enrichment for 480 students and professional development for 14 teachers since 2012. We are proud of our teacher partners, who will continue to teach this program to future classes of students, and make sure that environmental education continues to be part of the curriculum and culture of Mira Vista School.