STUDENT BLOG: Jade, OT Intern
Oakland Tech’s participation in the Community Tree Planting at Wanlass Park in Richmond was a very exciting new experience for me and many of our other team members. Having an event in an open, outdoor space, was a good way to incorporate interaction with nature to our indoor, school-based project. The leaders of the planting, Earth Team interns from Richmond High, taught us lots about what we were doing, how to do it, and how it benefited the environment. The main things that I took from this event were about how different types of trees grow better and help the soil and environment around them when planted in certain places. I also learned about which trees are native to California, like the Bay Laurel, and which are not, like the type of Magnolia that we planted.
In the middle of the plantings, we experienced some harsh weather – heavy rain and a bit of hail – but did not let that stop us! Many of us kept powering through, or stopped for a quick snack break to refuel and prepare to continue after the rain let up. Working with the other high school students also helped to raise our spirits because they supported us throughout it, and explained how to navigate the tree planting for some of us first-time planters. They motivated us to try to plant Earth Team’s new record number of trees in one day, which really made me able to keep going. Even though it was my first time trying this activity, I felt like I had a lot of support in this endeavor from our Richmond peers, as well as my group mates in the tree planting. I’m sure everyone felt similarly about their experience doing this.
Weekend events, such as this one, help to build our team’s trust, group work skills, and sense of community. I feel closer to the other interns at Tech, and even outside of our school, because of weekend events. We are able to share our passion for environmental issues, and do so in a fun, friendly way. I love the amazing sense of a close, tight knit community that weekend events give to Earth Team as a whole.
Written By: Jade, OT Intern
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