SJS welcomes sheep to outdoor classrooms
Saint James Catholic School (SJS) announced today the addition of three Southdown Babydoll Sheep to its outdoor classrooms. The sheep, Joey, Tru and Bodie, will be used to enhance science, math and social-emotional curriculum for students. The small-framed breed is known for its smiling, teddy bear-shaped face.
An after-school STEM Club (the SJ Shepherds) will care for the sheep until they get acclimated to a larger number of students. The school plans to integrate the sheep into the educational program throughout the year to enrich physical, life and Earth and space science instruction for K-8 students, as well as behavior, health and science concepts for preschoolers. Students will learn agricultural basics related to genetics, breed history, livestock health, farm structure and design.
“The sheep are an exciting addition to our outdoor classrooms,” said SJS Principal Sister Marie Hannah, O.P. “Our goal is to enhance and expand on SJS’ extraordinary Catholic educational experience with outdoor spaces that our students enjoy and appreciate.”
The sheep make up one of three outdoor classrooms at Saint James Catholic School. The first, the Stations of the Cross, is located in a wooded area of the school grounds. The teachers use the naturally shaded classroom as a place of serenity and prayer for students.
A second outdoor classroom includes six garden beds which are maintained by SJS second-grade students during the school year and volunteer families throughout the summer. The garden grows a variety of rotating crops, and the school plans to add a butterfly habitat soon. SJS hopes to expand the area into an arboretum to be cared for by all students to complement grade-level curriculums.