Somewhere deep in the heart of the Midwest lies our town. It is the quintessential rural town that has always been described in books, television, and movies since the beginning of time. Families have lived here for generations and take pride in everything that the small town has to offer. The townspeople come out in force at the annual Kiwanis Pancake Breakfast, as well as the Strawberry Festival. They crowd the stands to see their hometown team play ball and line the streets during the annual homecoming parade. It is, indeed, a tiny piece of Midwestern paradise.
Our high school special education classroom is a place of growth in academics, personality, and citizenship.
We celebrate each other's successes while learning from each other's mistakes; in short, we try our best and come together as one team with the common goal of becoming productive citizens in a global society.
My students don't let their disabilities define who they are or what they are capable of; instead, they embrace them and the challenges they pose without fear.
Everywhere we look, we are bombarded by the message of a declining pollinator population. According to Time Magazine, "A 2015 report from a United Nations group found that populations are declining for 37% of bee species, with 9% of butterfly and bee populations facing extinction." What can a small school in a rural community do to help these necessary insects? It can start a pollinator garden!
This garden is the beginning of a collaborative project of our high school's horticulture class and student council.
Being from a rural community, many of our students are more than familiar with bees, butterflies, and all of the other pollinators, but rarely-- if ever-- do they get a real chance to interact with them. The need for pollinator gardens are apparent, as a number of studies have shown their benefits. "'Children learn about nutrition, science, math, find inspiration in art and literature and overall get a sense of accomplishment and responsibility,' says University of Illinois Extension Horticulture Educator, Kelly Allsup. 'I do not have to find research to say that teachers love getting students actively involved and the opportunity to experience their learning,' says Allsup."
With your generous donation, we are looking to obtain a Hoerr's Nursery Gift Card. Hoerr's Nursery is a local horticultural garden center with professionals that are willing to help us find the plants we need to start our pollinator garden. Additionally, Hoerr's also sells landscape material, such as mulch and compost, to start our pollinator garden.
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