November 4, 2021
Students who may be on the lookout for a club to join should consider trying out Environmental Club, in which members are able to enjoy plants, gardening, improving mental health, and bettering the environment.
The club meets in art teacher and Environmental Club sponsor Miss Gabrielle O’Neal’s room, 1245, every Friday during CORE. There are Group Me and Remind links to get involved on the whiteboard right outside the door to O’Neal’s room. Miss O’Neal took over as club sponsor just last year and has thoroughly enjoyed it.
“Caring for plants has always been like a mental health check-in for me,” Miss O’Neal said. “This club is an incredible opportunity to share this with others and also learn from students in the plant hobby as well.”
In general, meetings are composed of an update on the previous meeting. Then follows a small activity. These activities are focused on learning and growing. The club’s environment allows these meetings to run smoothly.
“The club vibe is very relaxed,” Miss O’Neal said. “Everyone there is there for a low-stress, fun experience.”
As mentioned, the goal of the club is to promote healthy living. While promoting healthy living, plants are incorporated in numerous ways. Plants are able to allow students to have mental health check-ins with themselves.
“Learning to care for the environment and how plants can impact your life is huge!” Miss O’Neal said.
One activity that the club does in the foster plant program. Starting last year, it was a way to promote mental health check-ins during the winter months, since the winter months are when seasonal depression is most prevalent. Teachers are able to sign up to have a foster plant for a month, and during that month they get to care for that plant.
“Students would give them [the plants] names and the students and teachers would get attached to them,” Co-President of Environmental Club Bethany Huss said. “It was really cute to see them interact with the plants.”
Caring for the plant reminds others to also care for themselves. Physical mediation is another way caring for the plant can be used for. The club also eventually plans to make an impact in the community.
“We would like to do a White River clean-up in Noblesville in the future,” Miss O’Neal said.
However, due to the newness of the club’s revival, the community work is only in the plans right now. However, the club does host several fundraisers.
“I loved the plant sale that we did last year,” Environmental Club Co President Mallory Hopper said. “It was so fun just bonding with everybody.”
The club hosts a plant sale for funds in general and for maintenance and plants. Cuttings of plants are sold to any student interested. A shirt sale is also planned to raise funds for a living plant wall for the school. All in all, the club’s enthusiasm for plants and promoting healthy living makes it a great club for students to attend.
“This club is an incredible opportunity to share this with others and also learn from students in the plant hobby as well,” Miss O’Neal said. "I learn as much from the students in the club as they do with me.”