A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all, it teaches entire trust. – Gertrude Jekyll
A celebration of neuro-diversity at Variety School
Variety School is a special school within Nevada’s Clark County School District, catering specifically to students aged 5 through 22 who have autism and intellectual disabilities. At Variety School, one of our dedicated high school teachers, Ron Faggins, not only educates students but also serves as the school’s Green our Planet lead. In this role, Mr. Faggins effectively combines his expertise in behavior management, his commitment to equipping students with essential life skills, and his teaching abilities by utilizing the school garden as a valuable resource.
Everyone grows in the garden
On a daily basis, Mr. Faggins works with small groups of students in the garden, providing them with hands-on learning experiences that foster the development of social and vocational skills. Witnessing the engagement, growth, and enjoyment of students during these gardening sessions, Mr. Faggins aspired to extend similar experiences to a broader range of students at Variety School. To facilitate this, he trained and collaborated with several teachers on campus, introducing hydroponic stations into their classrooms. Additionally, Mr. Faggins has successfully secured grants to refurbish Variety School’s garden greenhouse.
Sowing, tending and harvesting!
If you were to pass by our garden on any given day, you would likely see Mr. Faggins and a group of students actively involved in pruning, sowing, weeding, watering, or tending to the soil. These collective efforts culminate when Mr. Faggins and several of our students participate in the annual Green our Planet farmer’s market, where they proudly sell the bountiful harvest they have grown. This event serves as a joyous occasion to celebrate not only the growth of plants, fruits, and vegetables but also the personal growth achieved by the students at Variety School.
Empowering students to thrive
Mr. Faggins’ dedication to integrating the garden as a valuable tool for education and personal development has had a profound impact on our students’ lives. Through his work in the garden, he has created an inclusive and engaging learning environment that empowers our students to thrive.