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Every Day at Oak Ridge

Students surrounding Thomas Lake Park sign
Two students make a pattern with leaves and pinecones
Students examining trees
Group of students snowshoeing
Two students examine leaves through magnifying glasses
A girl writes on a clipboard on a bench outside
Dragonfly lands on smiling student's hat
Two students sitting on tree stumps writing observations
Students and a teacher smile as they hug a tree
Students hike up a snowy hill

Outdoor Learning

Every class goes outside for learning, utilizing our gardens and the prairie, wetlands and forest adjacent to our campus.

Three children stand in front of a fort made of fallen limbs
Four kids use a branch propped on a stump as a teeter totter
Students drawing on concrete with sidewalk chalk
First grade students play gaga ball outside
Students play on outdoor playground equipment
Student jumps off rock in outdoor playground
Students dig in sandbox with shovels
Four girls snowshoeing
Students climb on hollow log in outdoor playground
Teacher and students collecting leaves and sticks
A boy proudly stands on top of a log
Three students climb on playground equipment
Two students play on playground equipment
A girl stands on a rock structure with arms outstretched

Outdoor Fitness and Play

Playing outdoors is fun and offers many physical, social, and mental benefits.  Outdoor play and fitness activities encourage the use of senses, enjoyment of nature and the development habits for a healthy lifestyle.  At Oak Ridge this includes playing on playground equipment as well as exploring nature in a structured or unstructured way.

Two male students put recycling in bin
Male student puts lunch trash into recycling bin
Two students next to battery and marker recycling bins

Waste Reduction

Our entire school is focused on reducing waste. In the lunchroom, we compost, recycle and use a sharing bin for unopened food. Student leaders make sure lunchroom waste goes into appropriate containers. We also collect markers and batteries for recycling in our entryway. 

Students add compost to a compost bin
Teacher shows worms to students
Teacher shows compost bin to kindergartners
Second graders add grass clippings to compost bin
Second graders add grass clippings to compost bin

Classroom Compost

Several classes reduce waste by caring for compost bins in their classrooms. The compost is used in our garden beds in the spring.