Five teachers from Blount County and Maryville schools will not only teach their students environmental lessons but help the community at the same time thanks to five “Go Green Grants” awarded by the Leadership Blount Class of 2009.
From earthworm farms and composting to energy sustainability to water conservation to erosion prevention, teachers have developed innovative plans and requested resources to help educate their students.
“Our class decided to combine two areas of interest that included the environment and education,” said Go Green Grant committee chair Jeanie Hilten. “This project allowed us to incorporate both of those issues.”
The Go Green Grant, Class of 2009’s Legacy project, awarded $1,735 in grants at an afternoon reception held Tuesday, Jan. 26, at Leadership Blount’s offices. Teachers were invited to submit proposals for a mini-grant to fund environmental education.
The application requirements were that grants be no more than $400, submitted by a certified teacher in Alcoa, Blount County, or Maryville school systems, and focused on environmental awareness, conservation or a “go green” initiative.
The recipients include:
Lori Wilson, a math teacher at Heritage Middle School, was awarded $397 to plant daylilies and monkey grass to stop erosion on HMS’s campus. Students will use appropriate mathematical equations to design the area to be planted and will later check it to see if the project has been successful.
Phil Young, a math and science teacher at Walland Elementary School, was awarded $390 to purchase materials for worm farms for all classrooms and to provide transportation for staff development by Keep Blount Beautiful. KBB will train teachers about environmental activities to use with students in regards to reducing waste.
Kathleen Hammontree, a science teacher at Maryville Intermediate School, was awarded $387 to purchase two rain barrels to raise environmental awareness and promote water conservation.
Carolyn Blevins, a kindergarten teacher at Mary Blount Elementary School, was awarded $177 to purchase a compost tumbler to teach students about recycling food scraps.
Cindra Boring, a teacher at William Blount High School Ninth Grade Academy who also oversees the school’s library, was awarded $385 to purchase DVDs on being green, sustainability, energy sources to use along with curriculum.
The funding for the grants was raised by the Class of 2009’s Go Green Gala last spring. The class intends to offer the scholarships again at the start of the next school year and encourages teachers to apply for a mini-grant to supplement their classroom materials and activities.
“We were pleased with the innovative ideas that teachers came up with to supplement their curriculum,” Hilten said. “Our hope is that these students will take these lessons with them as they become productive members of our society.”
In addition to Hilten, other committee members included Amy Vagnier, Abbe Evans, Candy Cooke, PJ Silver and Bonny Millard.
For further information about the program, contact Hilten at 865-273-1242.