/* Added by Amy Rhodes - 3.30.2017 - Case: 00513765*/

Go Further

Watch Our Gardens (and students) Grow!

Hi! My name is Stephanie Cornais and I speak for the plants. 


When I was a kid, Dr. Seuss' The Lorax was one of my favorite books. Plants, animals, and our environment is something I have been passionate about my whole life. As the new Pre-K and Lower School Science Lab teacher, I am excited to nurture a whole new generation of kids to love science and nature.


This past spring I was awarded one of the Maclay Faculty Excellence Grants, as well as an additional grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife, both of which allowed me to spend the summer here at Maclay building eight vegetable garden beds, eight butterfly gardens, and our Red Hills Region Wildlife Habitat. These gardens and habitats will serve as a living laboratory and outdoor classroom for all faculty and children of Maclay School, particularly during Science Lab. Habitat loss is the greatest threat to biodiversity and the children and I will be working together to be guardians and caretakers of our new habitats right here on Maclay's beautiful 100 acres. 


There will be some serious science going on this year, both inside the Science Lab and outside in our new gardens and habitats. What better place than these outdoor spaces to teach the children that solar fusion energy and the laws of thermodynamics are all rolled into one gentle breeze? Students will have fun while engaging in hands-on science inquiries and designing investigations into the natural world.


These gardens are more than science, technology, engineering, and math. They are sacred havens for all who use them, for the bees and butterflies that visit for a sweet drink, the birds looking for a safe place to raise their young, the plants joyous to have found a home where they will not be sprayed with toxic fertilizer and pesticides, and lastly, for the children, faculty and parents who come into these peaceful gardens. Nature is healing and it's amazing the positive effect that watching a butterfly for 30 seconds can have on the brain and nervous system, which of course improves learning outcomes! 


If you love nature and gardening and would like to be a part of the growth of the PreK and Lower School Gardens and Habitats, please email me at scornais@maclay.org. To stay up to date on the progress of the Gardens, please follow the Gardens Blog on Schoology, use access code: GSW5H-XQJKN to find us.


And remember, UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better, it's not. 

  • Stephanie Cornais is a Lower School Science Lab teacher who also was a recipient of the Faculty Excellent Grant awarded last spring. We are excited to watch her and her students flourish in her classroom and gardens this year.