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MHS Agriculture Department receives service learning grant

Article Date: 
7 June, 2013 (All day)

The Agriculture Science Department has been busy this spring!  If you have driven past Morgan Elementary School you may have noticed some new benches and ground cover in the far corner of the elementary playground. 
 Morgan FFA applied for and received a $2,000 service learning grant last August to design an outdoor classroom for Morgan Elementary students; the project theme was Natural Resources.   The freshman Ag Science class learned about native plants in Utah and then researched the types of soil at the elementary school, learned about hardiness zones, and identified special circumstances in the planting location.    Students learned about landscape design and spacing requirements then drew plans for the area before planting.  They also learned how to make a budget and selected plants to stay in budget.  Next, they decided on the equipment needed for the project and made and equipment order. 
The Agriculture Biology students researched the curriculum topics for elementary students and created mini lessons to give to the elementary school to use with the outdoor learning lab.  The Agriculture Systems & Technology class welded, painted, and installed the amphitheater benches.   161 MHS students helped pull out sod, lay down weed block, install all the plants, cement in benches, and spread bark.  
Students spent over 867 hours total completing the project.  Students who helped with the project liked the fact that they got to do a hands- on project and it was fun to see the little kids excited about what we were doing.
All of the plants in the outdoor classroom are Utah natives, are water wise plants and will flower through spring and summer.   So stop by and see how it changes color and grows! 
A very special thank you to Doug Duerden & ACE hardware for supporting the project and helping order equipment,  Wes Wardell for donating work gloves, Morgan Elementary School for donating the weed block, and Cub Scout pack 971 from the Morgan 12th ward .
The National FFA Organization offers grants each year to FFA chapters nationwide.    Morgan FFA was one of only two chapters in Utah that received the grant this year.  Some of the requirements for the grant that had to be met were: 1- had to take place over the a semester,  2- be hands-on,  3-  student led  4- apply concepts learned in Agriculture classes to real-life situations, and 5- provide service somewhere in the community.
We appreciate the hard work of all students who helped with the project and support from Morgan Elementary School.