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STEM Grant Provides Tower Garden For 1st Graders

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It's the same technology used by NASA, and now our 1st graders are using aeroponic growing to turn tiny seeds into delicious food for harvest. Thanks to a STEM grant, these lower school students are excited to have a Tower Garden right inside their classrooms. This vertical, indoor garden will teach students about much more than simply growing fruits and vegetables.. these 1st graders will be growing their math, science, language art, and social studies skills as well. 
Here's how it works: students were busy last week soaking the rock-wool and placing the special vermiculite onto the seeds. After filling the reservoir of the Tower Garden, they carefully arranged the seeds under grow lights and will now wait for the seedlings to grow! Once the seedlings are 2-3 inches, they will plant them into the Tower Garden. 
First Grade teacher Melissa Shockley said the enthusiasm of the students is priceless. "We are all so excited for this opportunity and to truly get our "hands on learning" and watch how God grows us HIS way!" 
Mrs. Shockley joined her colleague, Kelsey Nelson, for a training seminar in Phoenix, Arizona this past summer to further their knowledge and understanding of how the Tower Garden works and how to best utilize it in the classroom to increase overall learning. So far, the Tower Garden is a hit.  And Mrs. Shockley says there is even more to look forward to as they use this classroom garden to engage the students, the school, and even the community! 
Posted by Darla Rourk with

Chick-fil-A Leader Academy Members Enjoy Kickoff Experience

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28 of our high school students are serious about taking their leadership skills to a higher level. That's why they applied and were accepted into the Chick-fil-A Leader Academy.. a national leader program that provides students the platform they need to transform their schools and impact their communities. 
In last week's Kickoff Experience, Chick-fil-A Leader Academy participants were busy packing care kits and writing personal thank you notes for our service members deployed overseas. 
During this 7-month curriculum, participants will learn about vision and values, servant leadership, innovation and teamwork.. then together they will create and lead an impact project in our community. 
Freshman Rachel Andrews says she is looking forward to learning how to be a better leader by connecting with her peers and the community, "I think it's important to serve because you can really make a change in your community and help someone in need and you feel better when you give back to others."
We are incredibly thankful for our Chick-fil-A sponsor Josh Malone! Without his support, this opportunity would not be available for our students!

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