Carthay School of Environmental Studies Magnet: New Programs, New Vitality
Imagine a place with banana, apple and other fruit trees, lush gardens growing vegetables of all shapes and sizes, chickens scratching, and burbling water tanks where fish produce nutrients for the dangling roots of plants, which, in turn, clean the water for the fish. It’s an oasis of calm and green, just steps away from busy city streets, where children learn not only about the beautiful garden, but where the garden – and learning in and about the wider physical, outdoor world – colors every subject they study, as well as how they learn. For example, when a first grade teacher teaches students to read the word “apple,” and shares a book about the fruit…a master gardener plucks a few ripe orbs off a nearby tree for the students to taste. This “Garden of Possibilities” exists…and it’s the bedrock of the Carthay School of Environmental Studies Magnet.
Carthay Community School Park Opening
The park is an outgrowth of the Carthay school garden, which began almost exactly 10 years ago ... The garden has since grown to include the new outdoor classroom and park space, and serves as the foundation of the school’s effort that transformed Carthay Center Elementary into Carthay School of Environmental Studies Magnet, which began operating as a magnet program last year. ... the garden was the first of its kind in the district, but one of hopefully many more ...
“Gardens are wonderful opportunities for students to learn the basics of how the planet sustains life ... But there is also the simple beauty of it,” ... our society’s values should be reflected in our schools, which should be beautiful places we all can share.
Read the full Larchmont Buzz article. The Carthay Sunday Playground is open to the public Sundays 11am-4pm
If Michelle Obama Taught Biology, it Would Look Like This
"In a display of extraordinary multitasking, a humble Title I elementary school in Southern California boldly takes on numerous White House social initiatives in a single biology course. A gaggle of 3rd and 4th Graders, supported by community volunteers, explore photosynthesis, animal science and nutrition all in the pursuit of maintaining their very own organic garden -- and they couldn't be more enthusiastic to learn."
Carthay School science fair is hair-raising fun
The Carthay School Environmental Studies Magnet’s Science Fair and Environmental Expo includes classroom projects, exhibits, garden tours, student performances, workshops, games and an e-waste collection.
“It’s really Carthay’s biggest event of the year. We expect between 500 and 1,000 people” said Jon K. Armstrong, a Carthay School parent and volunteer organizer. “It brings the community together and showcases what’s going on at the school. It’s a fun event but it’s also educational."
Carthay's Beautiful Science Garden Built in Part by Big Sunday Volunteers
"At Carthay Center Elementary School in Los Angeles, parent Teresa Dahl is organizing water bottles, T-shirts, and energy bars to fuel volunteers on Big Sunday, with the eager assistance of a bunch of kids…. Carthay has a beautiful school science garden, which has been built in large part with the efforts of Big Sunday volunteers…. "
CARTHAY STUDENTS' SCRIPTS Performed by top actors
Carthay student Tamara Sims was one of five students in Los Angeles whose script was selected in Fall 2015 to be performed by actors such as Jack Black, Keegan Michael-Kay, and Leslie Mann. Each year, twenty 5th graders are mentored by professional screenplay writers from Young Storytellers and their play is performed by professional actors at the Big Show at Carthay. The show for which Tamara's play was selected is called The Biggest Show.
Carthay student Brooklyn Hughes was one of four students in Los Angeles whose script was selected in Spring 2015 to be performed by the cast of Glee. The performance was called the Final Glee Big Show.
Watch this YMF video to learn more about Tamara and her play.
Watch this Hollywood Today segment about the Biggest Show (including Tamara)
Read the Hollywood Times article about the Final Glee Big Show, with Brooklyn's play
Seeds of Change grant for community gardening project
"Carthay Elementary School’s Garden of Possibilities is one of 17 recipients to receive a Seeds of Change grant... The Los Angeles school was awarded $10,000 to open its 5,000 square foot garden to the local community, offering workshops on seed saving, square foot gardening, garden cooking, soil conservation and composting as part of a broader effort to encourage healthy eating. The hope is that the school will become a hub for information sharing in support of healthy, sustainable living."
It's an (Urban) Bug's Life - "Like a mini-Galapagos"
"What we’re really interested in doing is understanding the effect of urbanization on organismal biodiversity…. The tool that we’re using to study that is insects. … Insects are particularly great animals to look at if you want to understand evolution and adaptation to outside factors. They have such short lifespans, so changes to the species happen so much more quickly than they do for large animals like us. So over the course of this study, which will be three years, scientists will be able to watch evolution in action….. like a mini Galapagos.”
(Carthay wasn't mentioned in the radio story, but there are photos of insects from Carthay's Sampling Station, #19)
Big Sunday in Carthay's Garden
"Chris Phipps helped unload redwood at Carthay Center Elementary on Sunday to build a chicken coop in the school's "Garden of Possibilities" — a small but seemingly enchanted plot filled with tomato, cucumber and herb plants. Students already use the garden as part of their education, but adding livestock will take it to another level, parents said."
California's Green Schools
"A year long effort to bring gardens to their mostly concrete and asphalt schools has taken the education of LAUSD students to a new level. By providing hands on experience with gardening, the students -- 77% of whom live in poverty -- are being led by example toward a more sustainable and economically practical future."
Read HuffPo article and watch CNN video (Carthay is at the 1:00 minute mark)
Article and Review of Play by Carthay Teacher Alan Aymie
'Combining his experiences in the classroom, anger over the release of the ratings, and the challenges of being the father of a son with Asperger’s syndrome, a condition that causes significant problems in social interaction, Aymie, who is in his 40s, created a work that the LA Times reviewer wrote relayed a message of “simple, truthful power.” … Full-time teaching gave Aymie the chance to directly impact young lives in a way that not even a matinee performance of “Midsummer Night’s Dream” could equal. “What I liked most about teaching was the feeling that I made a difference,” he explained. “Every day I had the opportunity to make a difference.” '
"Aymie proves a first-rate educator here, making a cogent and compelling case that when it comes to educating children, numbers don’t tell the whole story."