Brookland Elementary School in Sydney is getting all sorts of appreciation for the way they transformed their outdoor zones. On reopening, the school was divided into 14 separate outdoor zones to keep the classroom bubbles isolated. This is how the school took its pandemic health safety measures. The students would exchange their playing areas in a period of seven days with another cluster.
To brighten up their classroom bubble and to bring some change and joy, Principal John Boutilier, along with the home and school committee, decided to paint the sidewalks.
From bright green vine with huge leaves to diagrams in rainbow colours, there are a lot of designs one can admire. The sidewalks have been decorated with flowers and even the seven chakras on the flower petals are dedicated to ‘Yogic Studies’.
The Principal, while talking about the zones and the project, said, "This is the way a playground should look, isn't it? It's so colourful."
This initiative was a result of discussions amongst the home and school committee along with the principal as they were worried for the children to have nothing to play with. Some parents showed concerns about what the children will do when their bubble is near the sidewalk. But after the painting of the zones principal, Boutilier told The Chronicle Herald, “I was here in the yard the other day and they were all playing hopscotch, running up and down (the sensory paths).”
This project was taken over by the home and school committee handling the task of finding volunteers and funding for the project. They asked artist Ryan Robson to design the zones, and the volunteers did the painting. "We've had a lot of big asks this year and we've got everything. We've been very fortunate to have the support that we do,” said Principal Boutilier. He added, “Pathways to Employment came and did the work, it took them one day, I was amazed to come back to this.”
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