Why should schools have ponds

Why should schools have ponds?

What is your favorite memory of your school? I remember my school had beautiful stone walls, that I would run my fingers on as I walked the corridors. Thankfully, the school wasn’t in the middle of a city, it was a little on the outskirts, near the backwaters. I loved the way the morning sun would reflect over the slightly moving waters, glistening, almost hypnotizing, as I looked out the window. And Oh, how the whole class would get excited to see beautiful white cranes fly in, and ducks take a swim.

I doubt any of us would look back as fondly to a memory of a blackboard or the inside of a classroom (unless of course you are talking, twinkly eyed, about a crush you had in class). Our best childhood memories are of our interactions with other life forms – animals, humans and nature! Our children deserve to have that experience.

Ponds in Schools

A water body is so much more than just a happy memory, I realize that now as an adult, as I reflect back. It’s subconscious effects on me were profound.

Auditory Appeal

We are so used to listening to construction sounds and car honks everyday, we wonder why we’re irritable and unfocused. Close your eyes and imagine the sound of the ocean, the rain, or running water. It’s instantly calming. As water filters into and out of your school pond, the sound it creates has the same effect. Sounds of nature, especially water is soothing, creating a Zen like environment, helping your child concentrate better. The power of the sound of water on the brain is something more schools should look into and take advantage of.

Mental Health Benefits

The Blue Mind: It’s a surprising science that shows how being near, in, on, or under water can make you happier, healthier, more connected, and better at what you do. Not only is listening to running water naturally calming, but a pond also creates a space to escape to when things get too overwhelming for your child. Just sitting beside the pond has many psychological benefits – its energy is naturally calming, increases focus and creativity. It has effects similar to a good night’s sleep, ultimately reducing any stress or anxiety you child may be facing. Water has an effect on the brain to the likes of meditation.

Additionally water, in any form, releases negatively charged ions into the air, combating free radicals. These negative ions are also believed to boost serotonin levels, which again relieves stress and depression – helping to increase energy, alertness, and concentration. It also purifies the air of dust mites, pollen, germs, allergens and pollutants, keeping your child’s body healthy.

Education and Interaction

Watching as wildlife breed and survive can inspire children to find out more about the natural world and their own relationship with it. It can help teach children about the joy we receive from loving and caring for the environment. This would in turn could arouse their interest or passion for nature, that they would carry well into their adulthood, unconsciously creating a better future for our planet.

Consider getting the older children involved in the process of planning, building, or maintaining the pond. It will create an environment of interaction and awareness, helping them understand how a complete, natural ecosystem works.

Naturally Cooling

An attractive benefit of having a pond is that it serves as outdoor air conditioning. When water evaporates off the pond’s surface, it reduces heat, which naturally cools the surrounding area, and who doesn’t love that? Children can enjoy being outdoors instead of being inside with the AC cranked up high, even when temperatures are high and humidity is low.

Environmental Benefits

One of the benefits of having a pond would be how it enhances the environment by just existing. Ponds create a mini sanctuary – offering food, water, shelter, and a place of breeding for indigenous wildlife like dragonflies, frogs, and birds that children would be excited to spot. It indirectly supports wildlife that has grown scarce in the city.

When you build a pond, it takes up a sizable portion of your lawn area, requiring less mowing, and emitting fewer pollutants into the air. It also means fewer pesticides and fertilizers are used for lawn care. The sludge collected from the pond filter is a natural fertilizer that can be used to feed your landscape and helps maintain soil moisture during the hottest days of summer.

Visual Aesthetic
The last thing on my list is how beautiful ponds can be, especially when it includes colorful fish and plants. Adding beauty to your school is one of the most obvious reasons to create a pond. It could become the focal point for your garden if additional features such as waterfalls, spitters, statues, or rock borders are added. Strategic placement and keeping lighting in mind, you can create a space that would be pleasing to the eye.

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