Garden and Regenerative Practices

The foundation for a lifetime of environmental stewardship, healthy eating, and connection to nature is developed in the outdoor garden classroom. Ecological literacy -- the ability to understand and interact with the environment sustainably -- is learned through games and special projects. 

Overall, students are better prepared for the world they inherit by exploring academics through the lens of solutions-based practices that are regenerative for soil, water, and communities.


Vital skills for regenerative living are practiced through units during a weekly garden class. Core curriculum are as follows:

● Nature Connection and Appreciation

● Soil, Composting, and Microorganisms

● Water and Watersheds

● Ecological Design

● Food Systems and Nutrition

● Changemakers and Communities


Students are empowered to serve as the next green leaders through ecological literacy, which is infused into the wider school culture and values in the following ways:

● Zero-Waste Week

● Water Appreciation Day

● Engineering Challenges

● Naturally built cob playground structures made of repurposed materials

● Faculty practices: 100% recycled paper and non-toxic school cleaning supplies

This infrastructure allows students to experience sustainability

values and promote a creator culture, rather than a consumer one.

Below are some examples of sustainability in action at AVS:

● Outdoor classroom benches and playground structures created

with bottle bricks (plastic bottles stuffed tight with items that

would otherwise be sent to the landfill) and cob

(a mixture of sand, clay, and straw)

● 1000+ gallon rainwater catchment system

● TerraCycle program to recycle mylar plastic wrappers

in the lunchroom

● Tinker Zone - outdoor makerspace where students are

invited to upcycle and make objects from found material.