Throughout the year, the 4th graders researched and prepared all the necessary steps to create a “Zen” garden. This class project is above all a collaborative school project. The students studied the culture of Japan through various subjects and topics. They were able to observe the details of the Japanese Friendship Garden located in Balboa Park, design their own 3-D mini “Zen” garden, as well as create a blueprint for a larger scaled one. Then the students came together to realize the life-size garden and have begun to finalize the completion of the project with help from their parents. The “Zen” garden seeks to interpret nature (through design) and realizing it (by implementing the plans). This garden creates opportunities for mindfulness to reflect on nature and the world around us.