May 18, 2023 – This afternoon, our STEAM Teacher Ms. Thorp partnered with Essex County Master Gardener/Watchung parent Sarah Perlman Paulsen to put on a phenomenal Opening Ceremony for the Connected Courtyard.
There were members of the Board of Ed, Town Council, NJEA and Sustainable Jersey in the audience today. Principal Krenn acknowledged all the hard work from Ms. Thorp & Sarah in coming up with the idea, securing the funding (through grants and donors), and following through on the long and challenging journey to completion. How fortunate we are to have them in our Watchung community! The name “Connected Courtyard” is derived from the objective of CONNECTING with nature, with the community and with each other.
There are over 40 native plants in the reimagined Connected Courtyard space, which is already home to pollinators like birds, bees and butterflies. Ms. Thorp and Sarah have bigger dreams of the koi pond becoming home to frogs and turtles, along with the courtyard being utilized as an outdoor learning space for Watchung students.
Ms. Thorp said in her remarks that she hopes the students of Watchung and the community “Never Stop Wondering About the Natural World.” Congrats on a beautiful ceremony and please join me in wishing the courtyard many years of growth and a positive impact.