Natural Bridge Elementary School celebrates garden's 20th anniversary

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NATURAL BRIDGE, Va. (WDBJ7) It was the 20th anniversary of having a garden at Natural Bridge Elementary School.

The garden has been sponsored from the start by local master gardeners, who gathered with some of the students to celebrate.

It's the science class you wish you had in the fifth grade.

“It’s been really, really fun, actually,” says 5th Grader Jozalyn Hubbard.

A garden, full of flowers you can dissect, and vegies you can pick and sometimes even eat.

Kelly Rapoza, the science teacher, says: “It’s just a great tool, and it’s something that helps bring learning to life.”

“Uh," says Hubbard, "It helps us learn.”

It does indeed, by bringing making science hands on.

“They’ve got their hands pulling things apart, putting things together, digging around,” Garden Leader Barbara Thomas explains enthusiastically.

“Actually," says Hubbard, "If we’re really lucky and there’s like something, the master gardeners will let us take a little off and eat it.”

“It’s just so nice that the students see that science isn’t boring," says Rapoza. "It’s not just always sitting in the classroom and reading a book and watching videos. It’s real life. It’s getting outside.”

Which they did today, giving some of the master gardeners a tour, and then marking each of the twenty years of the garden with factoids about what happened that year.

“It fills your heart when you see the kids really learning and growing. And has for a number of years,” says Thomas.