Black Hill Partnership Blog


In the fall of 2015, Barnesville embarked on a school-wide partnership with Black Hill Regional Park to enhance outdoor and environmental education across the School’s curriculum. This blog chronicles related programs and activities.


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Earth Day 2017: Plants & Gardens Expo Led by 7th Grade


Skills honed in the School’s Makerspace were put to use at a Bark Boat building station at the Barnesville School of Arts & Sciences Plants & Gardening Earth Day 2017 celebration.

Students built and test-floated mini sailboats using bark as boat hulls. Older students paired with their younger Buddies drilled holes in chunks of bark to install masts and sails. Mr. Weintraub built a temporary pond on the blacktop where the boats were tested for buoyancy and speed. Most boats sank or tipped on the first sail attempt, so students made adjustments -- selecting different sized or shaped bark, moving the mast, and changing the sail until they got their boats to float. Video is posted on Facebook.

In 2016, Barnesville faculty and naturalists from Black Hill Regional Park teamed up to create a Flying WILD Festival, an entire day of fun outdoor and environmental education activities related to birds, their habitats, and their migration. The day was the culmination of six months of bird-related nature lessons. This year, Barnesville seventh graders planned a similar Earth Day festival centered on plants and gardening. After spending time planning with Black Hill Naturalists, the students selected the theme and planned related educational games, crafts, and activities.

The day started with students from each grade reading facts about Earth Day, after which everyone viewed a short film. The seventh graders then led pre-k through eighth grade students paired in their Buddy Groups through a rotation of games, crafts, and activities at six different outdoor stations. Stations included: building Bark Boats, creating Fairy Gardens with herb seedlings, making recycled newspaper pots for pollinator plantings, a Weeds vs. Flower game, Water the Flowers relay races, and a nature scavenger hunt in Explorer Woods. Kids also enjoyed casual time with their Buddies playing sidewalk games and having fun with chalk and bubbles. They also used dandelion blooms to create a giant peace side on the hillside facing Barnesville Road.


Snapshots from the day are can be viewed in a Facebook Photo Album.

Some of the day’s events were streamed live on Facebook and can be seen using the following links:

  1. Earth Day Live Stream 1: Bark Boat, Fairy Gardens, Recycled Pots
  2. Earth Day Live Stream 2: Water the Plant Relay Race and Explorer Woods
  3. Earth Day Live Stream 3: Bark Boats That Float!
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7th Grade Planning "Plants & Gardening" Earth Day Celebration

In 2016 Barnesville School of Arts & Sciences faculty and naturalists from Black Hill Regional Park teamed up to create a Flying WILD Festival, an entire day of fun outdoor and environmental education activities related to birds, their habitats, and their migration. The day was the culmination of six months of bird-related nature lessons.

This year, Barnesville seventh graders are taking on a leadership role by planning, prepping materials, and leading small group activity stations. They have been spending time with Black Hill Naturalists planning for the second annual schoolwide Earth Day celebration which will take place on Friday, April 21.

While visiting Black Hill Regional Park, Barnesville seventh grade students brainstormed on a theme. They decided on “Plants and Gardening.” They researched activity ideas and voted as a class to decide which activities best fit the theme and were appropriate for all grade levels. They also had an opportunity to tour some plant activity stations at Black Hill Nature Center to get more ideas.

Stay tuned for more about this year’s Earth Day celebration!

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Earth Day Flying WILD Festival

WATCH: 2-minute ‪‎Earth Day‬ Flying WILD Festival video recap. The day was the culmination of six months of bird-related nature lessons, and embodied much of what the School community values as “The Barnesville Way” -- hands-on learning in nature, cross-curricular connections, kind and collaborative interaction among grade levels, and joy.


Posted by Jan Hyland on Tuesday April 26, 2016 at 11:29AM
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An independent private school in
Montgomery County, Maryland
offering innovative preschool
through 8th grade programs.

Barnesville School

21830 Peach Tree Road
PO Box 404
Barnesville, MD 20838

p: 301.972.0341
f: 301.972.4076

A BARNESVILLE EDUCATION

We offer a vigorous academic program for students as well as engaging, hands-on learning experiences.

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Our positive, supportive learning environment promotes imagination, exploration, personal growth, and achievement.


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