Scranton Teachers Plan for Nature Lab at High School

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SCRANTON -- A group of high school graduates is giving back to their school 50 years later.

As a gift, the Scranton Central High School Class of 1963 is lending a hand to students at Scranton High.

In order to celebrate their 50th reunion, members of the Scranton Central High School Class of 1963 each decided to throw in a few bucks, $4,00 in total. The money was planned for a project at Scranton High School.

One of 1963's distinguished alumni is former Scranton Mayor David Wenzel who brought the money to art teachers and students at the high school Friday.

"Forever there is always going to be a plaque over at Scranton high school that says 'Class of 1963'. That's great, that makes me feel good," said Mayor Wenzel.

The graduates took proposals from teachers and chose Maria Lozada's idea that she and her sister thought up many years ago. The money will be used to build a nature lab. But, it won't go in a science classroom.

"When people think of art they think of drawing and painting, of course its drawing and painting and illustration and design. But, this opens up new avenues of science and art coming together as one," Lozada said.

The nature lab the teachers are modeling theirs after is at the Rhode Island School of Design and is the only one of its kind in the world. So, the teachers think Scranton High School will be the only high school in the world with such a nature lab.

Teachers are looking to fill a classroom with natural items, plants, insects, whatever they can find. That's where they are asking for the public's help. Art students can then draw the objects by observation or under a microscope.

"Next year I'll be able to get more creative things in my portfolio when i go into college," said Scranton High School junior Scott Rafaini.

"I feel so lucky to be able to actually have something along the lines of this, it would be awesome," added freshman Madison Smolsky.

Teachers are putting out a call to people who collect natural items, to share them with the school's new nature lab.

The 1963 grads are putting out a call to the classmates that followed them. Let's see what they can do.