Think green — LaFayette-Lanier Elementary holds Earth Day event

Published 8:00 am Saturday, April 23, 2022

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VALLEY — On Friday, students from LaFayette Lanier Elementary School celebrated Earth Day 2022 by learning some basic facts about our earth from eight stations set up under tents in front of the school. The third grade students did a walkthrough at 9 a.m., the fourth graders at 10:30 a.m. and the fifth graders at 12:15 p.m. Each group had an hour-and-a-half to check out what was going on.

The Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) had stations on air pollution, water quality and recycling, and Sigma Alpha Sorority from Auburn University had stations where AU students talked to the kids on ways they can create art with recycled materials, ran them through an environmental mystery guessing game and conducted a “Shape Your World” Earth-conscious painting activity. Waste Management had one of their big waste disposal trucks at their station and talked to the students about where their household garbage goes. With that big truck at their station, there was a definite “wow” factor for the kids to stand next to that truck when it picked by a waste can.

One of the more interesting stations was manned by Future Farmers of America (FFA) students from Inspire Academy. They called it Garden in a Glove, and their demonstration showed what can happen when a seed is placed on moist cotton and put in a window. In time, it will start growing into a plant.

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“You can see what’s required for a seed to grow,” said FFA Advisor J.B. Harris. “It needs moisture, heat and time. It has all the energy it needs to grow, but it needs those three things for it to happen.”

The FFA program is one of Inspire Academy’s most popular offerings.

“If anyone is looking for me or (fellow instructor) Josh Bryan, they won’t find us in a classroom,” Harris said. “We will be outside with the students in a learning activity.”

The students can work in a garden or help raise farm animals. They can also work with an aquaculture system where they raise fish such as tilapia and catfish.

“We will be soon be harvesting broccoli and collards in our garden,” Harris said.

They will then turn their attention to the summer crops.

Fifth grade student Anna Beth Lawrence is taking on the initiative of getting recycling programs going in local communities.

“I know it won’t be easy, but it’s something that needs to be done,” she said.

She credits her older brother, Titus, for inspiring her to do this.

Anna Beth has a petition being circulated to drum up interest in a recycling program.

In the afternoon, the students went to a designated area on the campus to pick up litter. When they finished that chore, each could relax with a cold drink.