Barnesville School of Arts & Sciences is breaking in its new playground with a drop-in playdate Thursday, August 6 from 6:00 - 7:30 pm. Barnesville families, friends, summer campers, and community members are invited to climb on the big ship and enjoy the new features added by this year’s graduating class. Graduates will show off their favorite design elements and reconnect with their younger buddies.
The Class of 2015 left its mark both philanthropically and environmentally with playground enhancements for the School’s youngest students. Graduating 8th graders conceived and planned the project, helped raise funds for building materials, and spent three days their final week of school building four new nature-inspired play stations for the School’s preschool playground.
The 8th Grade Class Gift, a tradition at Barnesville, is one of many lessons in philanthropy Barnesville students receive, helping our students understand the need to give back to their community. Community service is an integral part of a Barnesville education, and this year’s gift is especially heartfelt because the service project was inspired by the class motto, “Leave Your Legacy,” demonstrating their desire to leave behind something that could be enjoyed by their young buddies, as well as future students.
Staying true to Barnesville’s status as a certified Maryland Green School by the Maryland Association for Environmental and Outdoor Education, many of the new playground features incorporate the use of recycled materials. Additions include a slide built into a hillside, a clatter bridge , a reading area under the trees with tree stumps for seating, and a music station that includes recycled pots and pans. Students were responsible for all phases of the process, from choosing the gift, researching and designing it, and finally building it with the help of the School’s facilities crew.
Eighth grade student and coordinator of the project, Sam Snitkovsky, explained that the Class of 2015 chose to expand the playground with hope that the kids will be more active, and spend more time playing and learning outside. At a dedication ceremony he said, “We hope the children will put it to good use, and enjoy it for years to come!”
Eighth Grade Lead Teacher, Tara Barnhart, explained that the tradition of leaving behind a class gift began several years ago, as part of the students’ fundraising efforts for their class trip to New York City. She commented that this year’s class gift was, "an extraordinary effort by the 8th grade class to select, plan, and execute their class gift idea, something that truly benefits their preschool buddies and the school as a whole."