Senior School classrooms at our St Kilda Road Campus all looked a little greener this year thanks to Head of Student Wellbeing Leonie Abbott’s ‘Peace Lily Project’, which saw every Tutorial Group take on the care of their own peace lily.

With love we flourish: (L-R) Zoe, Lilly, Lauren and Alice with ‘Karhli’ the peace lily

‘The goal for the project was twofold,’ she says. ‘Firstly, creating an environment with an element of nature helps students consider the environment they create. The other focus was to care for something beyond themselves. Peace lilies are very demonstrative plants. They tell us when they are thirsty, feeling constrained or undernourished.’

While some groups found the idea of plant care a bit of a hassle, others literally embraced their lily with open arms. ‘Interesting that this mimics the role wellbeing can play in our own lives,’ says Leonie. ‘It’s either something we take responsibility to develop, or something we ignore.'

‘It was my hope to help students collectively look after something and respond to its needs, as a way of modelling how important wellbeing is to nurture and nourish.’

Year 10 students Zoe, Lilly, Lauren and Alice lavished so much love and attention on their group’s lily ‘Karhli’ that she soon flowered and outgrew her surroundings.

The girls promptly organised more soil and a larger pot for her.

‘Checking on Karhli and taking care of her is a bright start to our day,’ says Lilly. ‘We never forget to water her or make sure she’s growing well – it’s become a hobby between us'.

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