On a cool day in November, the sun shines through the golden changing leaves of fall. Participants and staff from The Blueprint Foundation (TBF) meet staff from Leach Garden Friends (LGF) and JCWC to learn about and search for amphibians. JCWC staff had the opportunity to speak with 7 students from TBF to hear about their experiences at the Back 5 Project.

We asked students why they think access to an outdoor classroom is important. Ja’Siah, who has been to Leach Botanical Garden (LBG) “too many times to count” explained that “when you are in person you can enjoy a lot more and see how it actually works.” Mariah agreed that it is “important to actually see and feel what you are learning”. Ari, a first-timer at LBG said “I feel like it gives you a better chance to explore and get out and do things you haven’t done before.” Students recognized the benefit of their work in the Back 5. Harmony explained, “you are getting information about the population of what type of species is here and what lets that species thrive here”.

What do they like about being at the Back 5 and Leach Botanical Garden? “I love it here because if you listen you can hear birds and nature sounds” (Charles). “If you are quiet enough.. I have seen a deer and a fox” (TC). “I love the garden because it is nice and quiet… and it has beautiful plants and animals” (Treazure). To learn more about the Back 5 project, email info@leachbackfive.org.