Congratulations to Millikan Middle School 6th Grade and Roots & Shoots for being the Climate Community Citizen of the Week - and for winning the display board contest at the 2009 Roots & Shoots Day of Peace at the Santa Monica Pier. Roots & Shoots is the Jane Goodall Institute’s global environmental and humanitarian youth program.
This year, over 500 hundred members and 30 Roots & Shoots youth groups from throughout the state of California came out to display their environmental projects that they completed during the past year. Not only there to display their work, these youth showcased their enthusiasm, dedication, and passion for making the world a better place one project at a time. In doing so, they spread the message of change and motivated countless others to become involved and make a difference.
6th Grade Science Academy was founded by Deborah (Deb) Woolford in 2004 as a compliment to the existing 7th and 8th grade Science Academy at Millikan Middle School. (Science Academy is a rigorous, honors level academic program designed for students who wish to excel in science and math.)
The Roots & Shoots program was integrated into the academic curriculum to enhance the overall learning experience for the gifted student.
Deb was inspired by hearing Jane Goodall speak at a science conference and decided to run the program in her classroom each year. Students hold meetings during class and decide collectively what kind of project they want to accomplish for that academic year.
The projects over the years have included: Helping animals get off “death row” at the East Valley Shelter, rescuing red-eared slider turtles and building 2 ponds on campus (incidentally, our school mascot is the turtle!), educating the public about the illegal importation and abuse these turtles suffer each year, running a Science Festival Fundraiser to raise money to build one of the ponds, the following year we raised money
through on campus events such as movie night to raise money to build the second pond.
The projects for which the class won the display board contest were the following:
#1. Raise enough money to replace the existing pump and filtration system to accommodate more rescue turtles by selling our own coffee (Student designed logo on coffee bags, t-shirts and hats), they raised $3000.00! and the PTA/Booster club at the school matched the funds.
#2. Educate the school and public about the illegal importation, unhealthy and abusive treatment of these animals (We worked with the California Turtle and Tortoise Club to do this)
#3. Received a grant from LAUSD Garden Program to develop and grow a sustainable garden on campus of Kentucky Bush Beans, pumpkins and squash. The beans were harvested in August and donated to the San Fernando Mission to put healthy, organic vegetables on the table for homeless people in our area. The class plans to continue the farm this year and grow winter vegetables for harvest in the spring time.
This is our first “class” award and we are very happy to have such a wonderful group of students!
Congratulations again and keep up the great work.