Grounds and Facility

The Grounds

The school is hosted by Solid Ground Farm (SGF) in the rolling hills of Athens County. The 17-acre homestead farm and education center models sustainable agriculture practices, environmental stewardship, and conscious management of natural resources through participation with nature. Since 2008, SGF has hosted summer day camps, outdoor recreation events, and educational workshops.

Its facilities, gardens, pastures, orchards, forests, and recreational features present a wide array of learning opportunities in all seasons and allow participants to experience and interact with nature in its many forms. SGF presents opportunities for students to engage with farm life, learn practical skills and responsibilities, develop entrepreneurial projects, and experience the rhythms of the seasons.

Classrooms

Classes will be indoors and out, allowing students to explore the forests, fields, and ponds of the surrounding countryside and then return to the comfort of a log-built classroom. The renovated farmhouse includes large classroom spaces, a full kitchen, whole group and small group learning spaces, and an art studio and maker space, each consciously designed to encourage student engagement and learning.

Recreation

Built for summer camps, team building exercises, and general enjoyment, the farm features large game fields, sledding hills, hiking trails, ponds, SE Ohio's largest permanent obstacle course, and the endless potential for creative enjoyment, play, and learning presented by the woods. A three season gym and indoor climbing course allows for fun, games, and focused movement classes. Wood-fired ovens, outdoor kitchens, a greenhouse, and livestock pastures complement the experience. With these resources, students can explore their world, themselves, and the complex relationships between them, as they play, create, and learn to navigate our world.

Farm Life

Our diverse farm features everything from fruit and veggie production to free range chickens and pastured pigs, from wild harvested medicines to culinary mushrooms. Working with farmer educators, students will learn to cultivate plants, husband animals, and discover value in the natural world from building structures to building fires. Real life examples will stimulate interest in and reinforce lessons learned in natural sciences, entrepreneurship, art, communication, math, natural history, literature, and more.