Greenhouse at MN State Academy for the Blind

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A nonprofit fundraiser supporting

Minnesota State Academy for the Blind Foundation
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Raising funds to build a greenhouse at the academy.

$450

raised by 6 people

$75,000 goal

8 months left

WHAT NEEDS FUNDING

A working greenhouse provides a living laboratory where students can experience hands-on learning in nearly every core curriculum subject but particularly in STEM fields.  Students will oversee the greenhouse, with staff supervision, and participate in all aspects of the care and maintenance of the plants.

COMMUNITY INVOLVMENT

We plan to partner with local retail garden stores such as Wagners and Bachmans, an apple orchard, and greenhouse in Faribault.  From seeds to gardening equipment, we will seek out the expertise of our local horticulture experts.  We will also work closely with school staff, parents, student family members, and the local Lions Club to ensure ongoing engagement and support.

WHY IT MATTTERS

Most visually oriented concepts in science classrooms pose significant challenges to learning among students with visual impairment.  Science technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields are underrepresented by students with disabilities.  Hands-on science experiences can be limited for students with blindness or low vision.

A greenhouse promotes engagement and curiosity as well as the development of a range of skills, science knowledge, and conceptual understanding in an experiential environment.  For students who are blind or visually impaired, being able to feel the soft texture of a panda plant allows them to engage in sensory exploration.  Dissecting plants to better understand plant reproduction brings biology to life.  A greenhouse gives students the chance to explore their world in a structured, tactile way not possible with traditional textbooks.

MEASURING SUCCESS

Initial success will be the completed greenhouse and science curriculum that integrates student interaction with the greenhouse and the acquisition of basic gardening skills.  Ongoing success will be additional program opportunities and integrated curricula that take advantage of the sensory, hands-on experiences available for the students, including art, math, and language arts.

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