Chester W. Nimitz Middle School (NEISD) gets nation’s first Immersive Biophilic ReCharge room for schools. San Antonio North Central Rotary Club has designed and donated the nation’s first immersive biophilic Serenity and ReCharge room to the teachers and staff at North East Independent School District’s Chester W. Nimitz Middle School/STEM Academy.
The SEL (Social and Emotional Learning) and Wellness representatives at Nimitz Middle School, realizing that administrators, staff, and all students are facing one of the toughest years in their educational careers, reached out to North Central Rotary Club with a desire to provide teachers and staff, and students a room that “will ensure the peace of mind one needs to be at their best in the classroom if they are having a hard time during the day…” North Central Rotary Club responded to the Middle School request with the proposal to create a ReCharge room that was an immersive experience, inspired by Studio Elsewhere’s biophilic rooms created for nursing and professional staff at New York Hospitals who were dealing with the incredible strain of the COVID pandemic. San Antonio North Central Rotary Club and Nimitz Middle School felt that like nurses, teachers have confronted staff shortages, enormous workloads and a flood of pandemic related disruptions.
Principal Jennifer Cooper graciously suggested and donated the space, Assistant Principal Christopher Castro and Junior Cadet and Wellness Coordinator Robert Gonzalez worked creatively with the projection system to provide a variety of videos, labor and invaluable suggestions and feedback. “Recharge Rooms are immersive, biophilic private spaces designed to ameliorate trauma, anxiety, and stress. They feature multisensory input that is inspired by nature, as has previously been found to confer physiological benefits. These environments include silk imitation plants, projected scenes of soothing natural landscapes, low lighting … high definition audio recordings of nature sounds paired with relaxing music, and infusion of essential oils and calming scents.”
At the soft opening of the room, Principal Jennifer Cooper said, “Words can’t describe what the relaxation room does for the well-being of our faculty and staff. The simple fact that the North Central Rotary Club gave selflessly of their time and resources is humbling and appreciated. When teachers take care of themselves, they become better for their students, and ultimately, that’s what it’s all about. Thank you Rotarians, for making this happen.” SANC Rotary Club Past President Chance expressed gratitude that one of our NEISD partners gave the Club the opportunity to fulfill our Rotary International mission promoting Mental Health in our communities. Grand Opening is set for November 29, 2022 at 10:00 AM “Rotary is 1.4 million passionate individuals in 35,000+ clubs worldwide. We are both an international organization and a local community leader. Together we lead change in our own backyards and across the world. The Rotary District of South Central Texas has 57 clubs and over 2,200 members serving their communities right here in Central Texas.”