Document Type

Capstone Project (Open Access)

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)


Liberal Studies


Liberal Studies

First Advisor

Patty Wang


The focus addressed in this Capstone Project is the benefits of live plants and animals within the classroom. This is an important issue for both students and teachers because live organisms within the classroom aids mental health, physical health, strengthens morals, and broadens horizons. An evidence based argument is offered that these issues are growing within the schools and need to be addressed with all tools available. The primary stakeholder perspectives chosen were teachers, because they are affected and can see the benefits of the topic at hand. Three themes/action options emerged from an analysis of the data and explored as ways to address the issue presented. Three themes emerged from an analysis of the data: 1) many students are not in touch with nature; 2) there are many students struggling with mental illness; and 3) morals need to be strengthened and discussed within the classroom. The introduction of plants and animals is argued to be the most effective way to tackle the challenges stated above.