Penn Forest will host Outdoor Classroom
The Penn Forest Natural Burial Park is continuing to use its grounds as a springboard for education.
The “green” cemetery, located on Colorado Street, will host an Aug. 30 workshop conducted by The Outdoor Classroom, a learning facility based in Upper St. Clair, which aims to bring a love of science to young and old alike.
“We do outreach if we're invited to events like this, but we also hold nature-based summer camps that focus on environmental science for kids from age 4 up to age 12,” said program administrator Eva Barinas.
Barinas will teach the class, “Nature's Recycling,” which focuses on the process of decomposition.
“I guess it's kind of ironic that it's at a cemetery,” she said.
Cemetery owner Pete McQuillin met Outdoor Classroom Program Manager Jessica Kester at the cemetery's geocaching event held in May, and invited her to bring the Outdoor Classroom to Penn Forest.
“I'm just trying to make (the burial park) available to the public in all kinds of ways,” McQuillin said. “It's certainly part of our publicity, if people find out about it and are interested in the cemetery, but we're not selling or anything like that.”
Barinas said the class will look at fungi and microorganisms' role in decomposition.
“Aside from just plain old dirt, there are living organisms in the soil that help with decomposition,” she said. “Part of that process is helped along by fungi.”
In addition to outreach, Outdoor Classroom educators match their offerings with curriculum from surrounding South Hills school districts and invite students to their home base, at Boyce Mayview Park.
“We have the kids work in the field, and apply what they're learning in biology to the things we do,” Barinas said. “We've also worked with teachers from other high schools and middle schools who come out to explore some real-life examples of the environmental science their students are working on.”
This fall the Outdoor Classroom will mark a decade in existence.
The class will last one hour, and begin at 10:30 a.m. Refreshments, a Q&A about the burial park and park tours will take place following the workshop.
The cost is $5 per child. To sign up, RSVP by Aug. 25 to 412-265-4606.
For more information, visit TheoutdoorclassroomPA.org.
Patrick Varine is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7845 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penn Hills family granted Make-A-Wish trip to Hawaii
- Flooding problems plague Rodi Road
- 11-year-old who turns in airsoft gun he took to Penn Hills Middle School faces expulsion hearing
- Aftermath of Penn Hills murder-suicide shooting leaves family stunned
- Penn Hills transforms into NYC for Vin Diesel witch movie