Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Livin' the Green Life

Shelby Clayton gets her hands, or at least her gloves dirty.
The native rain garden installed in the Barth courtyard
Blogger's Note: Witnesseth it here first dear reader. Behold yet another submission from the unsleeping hand of John Armato, press agent extraordinaire! (Also, a darn good story)

Barth Elementary School experienced a “green” year in 2012.

With the financial help of grants from the Department of Education and PECO, partnerships with many community organizations, and a great deal of enthusiasm, energy, and effort from students, staff, and parents Barth students were able to gain a great deal of knowledge about energy and ecology.

The year began with students using hip waders which were purchased through grant money to have hands-on exploration of local streams.

Partnering with the Montgomery County Parks and Heritage Service, students traveled to the Central Perkiomen Valley Park and received education on point and non-point sources of pollution and watersheds.
Native plants were used in the
Barth courtyard.

Next stop for the students was a field trip to Memorial Park where students were able to apply what they learned from the previous field trip and classroom experiences to improve the stream while taking part in an Earth Day cleanup.
From left, Nayeli Cruz, Dezmyre Aiken,
Paige Jones, and Emily Weber.

The Barth courtyard was the scene of the next project which involved a total redesign with emphasis on an eco-friendly environment.

Partnering with Pond Works, a local aquatic design and maintenance company, students were able to develop and install a natural bog filtration system for the courtyard pond.

A solar powered fountain and solar lighting were also installed in the courtyard.

DeShawn Rivers enjoys his time in the garden.
Lorry Filson, from the American Native Nursery, worked with students to design and plant a native rain garden.

The native rain garden consists of plants native to the state of Pennsylvania and has as one of its main purposes to reduce erosion and runoff while at the same time providing a unique educational experience for students.

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