On Friday, April 28th, students at The Children’s Center celebrated their expanded ‘pollinator garden’ by welcoming Steve Vacendak, Executive Director of NC Beautiful, and Lisa Parrish from Duke Energy to a special ribbon cutting and classroom lesson in their enhanced outdoor learning garden. Thanks to a grant from NC Beautiful and Duke Energy in early 2017, the Centers for Exceptional Children has been able to expand the horticulture program to include a more diverse selection of plants in the special pollinator garden.
Horticulture Therapy is a significant component of our programming. Our students use the cultivation of plants and garden activities to improve their mental, physical, and social health. The horticultural therapy program at The Children’s Center brings nature-based programs into the school setting using hands-on activities to stimulate sensory, motor, cognitive and communication skills. A teacher’s lesson about color, shape, and texture comes alive when supplemented by a guided experience in the garden. Nature-based activities can enhance the efforts of physical, occupational, and speech therapists as well. Using thoughtfully designed garden projects and activities can easily be adapted to accommodate all ability levels.