Through partnerships with Longwood Gardens and the Rockwell Development Group, a large contingent of middle-school students who are members of Chester County Futures recently took part in an interactive day of learning at the Futures AHEAD Spring Enrichment Camp.
Eighty-three students from the Kennett, Oxford, Coatesville, and Phoenixville school districts explored the concept of biomimicry through unique, hands-on learning activities with live plants.
Each team of students was led by a “professional educator” from Longwood and a returning “expert chaperone” from Rockwell, which hosted the Fall Enrichment Camp last November.
Using their home design blueprints from the Fall Camp with Rockwell, teams applied the idea of biomimicry to solve the problem of an imaginary customer.
Students also took part in an interactive tour of Longwood Gardens, explored careers in horticulture, and were inspired to create their own natural engineering inventions that they presented to horticulture professionals, camp staff, and the board members of Chester County Futures and Longwood Gardens.
Chester County Futures is a nonprofit founded in 1996 that offers direct program support and services through after-school academic enrichment meetings, mentoring, and post-secondary scholarship support.
Futures AHEAD is an academic enrichment program designed to provide CCF students with opportunities to develop 21st-century skills, explore career and educational options, and cultivate academic aspirations and accountability.
The Enrichment Camps are held three to four times a year at local corporate or educational sites and focus on themed curriculum designed to engage a student during the challenging middle school years.