The Secret Garden

Our Vision

The Secret Garden

A place for:

  • Quiet reflection
  • Reading
  • Imagination play
  • Outdoor learning

Why Do We Need A Secret Garden?

“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything” - Albert Einstein

Research by the Nature Play SA shows kids spend up to 90% of their time inside. Why? Because they are getting addicted to screens and are on them an average of 6 and a half hours a day according to the BBC. Some adults are also stopping kids from going outside because it’s “dangerous.” Schools aren’t helping either, students come to school and are often stuck sitting inside their classroom for 4-5 hours. Why do we have to learn inside? Why can’t we learn outside?

To fix this, we have found a play space that we can turn into a sanctuary but it is overgrown, underused and uninviting. The space hasn’t been maintained since it was created as a Native Bush Food Garden. The pond has turned green with algae and the soil is as dry as a desert. We need to do something about it.

We imagine it being a native, lush, green, vibrant butterfly garden

The current state of the "forgotten garden".

Kids who don’t want to run around still need an opportunity to go outside and what better way than a Secret Garden where they could sit back and read a book, connecting and learning about nature. Why should kids have tedious play times and not learn through play?

A decline of play has resulted in more children being stressed and depressed. Adding to that stress, classrooms and the yard can get really loud. Certain kids will need a place where they can reduce the stress and sit in a quiet, calm, non-threatening environment.

Play is our brain’s preferred way of learning. Do we need to create more opportunities for kids to play? The Secret Garden is not intended to be a vigorous play area, it should stimulate imagination and fantasy play, something that is missing from the yard. According to Dansky (1980), "Imagination play makes children more creative, helps them self-control their emotions, do better at school, form a problem-solving way of learning and when a child engages in pretend or dramatic play, they actively experiment with the social and emotional roles of life."

In a recent survey, we learned that more than half of the students want more imagination/fantasy play and a quiet spaces like The Secret Garden in the playground.

This is why we NEED a Secret Garden:

  • Children need to get outside more.
  • The current garden is horrible and not being maintained.
  • Many kids are bored at play time because they don’t have have an abundance of things to do.
  • Some student who are stressed and anxious would benefit from place to relax and recover.
  • Kids need a place for imagination and fantasy play.