Seniors Join Secondary School Students for Second Rooted in Hope Training Class

This past Saturday October 21st, 6 seniors, 9 students and 2 teachers braved the strong wind and cool temperatures to attend the second Rooted in Hope tree monitoring training session at Batsman Park located off Father Tobin Drive, beside Louise Arbour Secondary School just west of Bramalea Road. Alice, Sadia and Sedi, from ACER were there to once again lead the session. Participants who had attended the first session in August were assigned leadership roles to train the others in basic tree measurement .

Then they were all given the opportunity to measure the height and canopy width of mature trees using long tape measures and sextants. During this exercise, the students were able to draw upon the wealth of the seniors’ experiences, including those of a retired science teacher and an engineer. The group then learned how identify different tree species, to observe both healthy and stressed trees and to understand the impacts of poor planting, mulching and maintenance techniques on tree health and growth.

During the lunch break the students from Louise Arbour proudly showed off the gardens located on the nearby school grounds. A vegetable garden, planted and maintained by the students produces tomatoes, beans, kale and asparagus. A pollinator, (medicine wheel), garden with local herbs is also tended by the students with guidance from a local Indigenous group. The produce from both gardens provides food for students’ families and is also the source of healthy meals provided in the school cafeteria.

There was lots of excitement and enthusiasm despite the cold. The seniors enjoyed interacting with the students and being able to apply their knowledge and experience to a new set of problems. They’ve even offered to work with the teachers from Louise Arbour to mentor and tutor the students on a regular basis. And the students were enthusiastic to learn leadership skills and what it means to be advocates for Brampton’s urban tree canopy.

Rooted in Hope, funding provided by the Government of Ontario

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