Home Depot brings the classroom outside

Students and teachers at Calera Middle School will have a greener place to learn after Home Depot volunteers constructed an outdoor classroom at the school April 21.

Pelham’s Home Depot donated the manpower and materials necessary to build an accurate classroom replica slightly south of the school building off U.S. 31.

The project features a teacher’s table, a chalkboard, flower pots and a mulch-floored classroom area built to the same dimensions as an indoor classroom.

“We more or less brought an indoor classroom out here,” said Eric Zarko, with Home Depot. “Except most indoor classrooms don’t have azaleas and flower boxes.”

Teachers will be able to use the outdoor classroom to teach environmental lessons, have outdoor labs or get outside for a while, Zarko said.

“It will give parents a chance to come out here and eat lunch with their kids, they can have parent-teacher meetings out here, and someone in the city could even hold an event out here,” Zarko said. “It’s really a multi-purpose facility.”

Home Depot donated all materials for the project, and about 15 Home Depot employees helped build the outdoor classroom on their day off.

The volunteers completed the entire project in one day.