WAMS Spruces Up School with Native Plants

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Pike County, PA – The Wallenpaupack Area Middle School (WAMS) Volunteer Club was the proud recipient of the Pike County Conservation District (PCCD) Environmental Education Project Grant in the fall of 2010 to install native plants on the school grounds. Students in grades 6-8 planted native Pennsylvania plants outside of the Middle School in May of 2011. The students purchased and planted herbaceous perennials, woody plants, and small trees and shrubs on the building grounds. On May 16th some of the members of the Volunteer Club who participated in the native plant project provided an informative presentation to the PCCD Board of Directors at the District’s monthly meeting.

The students discussed the importance of native plants to the local ecosystem and how they learned the scientific names of the plants in the purchasing and planting process. Teacher advisor Allison Francesco stated “The kids had a great time and were thrilled at the opportunity to get their hands dirty!” Belinda Kromko, the head custodian at the Middle School assisted the students with plant selection and planting. Through the leadership of teachers Allison Francesco and Mariruth Borden the sixth, seventh and eighth grade students were able learn environmental science concepts and citizenship skills in volunteerism.

The PCCD provided financial and other support for this project. Each year the District provides $500 through the PCCD Environmental Education Project Grant to a Pike County teacher/classroom or youth organization to fund a project that compliments the mission of the District. This has been a successful program with over 250 students and teachers participating from all three School Districts in Pike County. For more information on the PCCD Environmental Education Project Grant as well as District programs and services please call 570-226-8220 or visit www.pikeconservation.org.

Photo Caption:  Wallenpaupack Area Middle School Students planting native plants on school grounds.