West Greeley has been enjoying many educational outreach opportunities where we are privilege to engage with our community. In September we touched the lives of over 600 youth at a variety of activities and locations.
We have nurtured relationships with the Greeley Jesus Rodarte Center youth since we worked with the Weld County Extension office in the spring to plant raised herb and vegetable gardens at the Center. Besides weeding, watering and harvesting their “crops,” the kids have spent time volunteering at Houston Gardens working on various projects where Paul Conklin, Garden Manager, who always provides “learning moments.”
Sixty-four FFA students competed in the Northeast Colorado Regional Range judging contest and a dozen CSU students – who are working toward becoming future Ag Teachers, participated out at New Raymer. Eight area FFA chapters sent students to apply their Ag class lessons in a field setting. They divided the students into three groups with two out in the field at separate locations learning about habitats and soil types, supervised by NRCS Techs and Ag teachers. The third station they rotated through was indoors at Prairie High School where they were tasked with identifying 30 range plants. The university students seemed thrilled with this rangeland focus, which they said is rare to find. All involved are grateful for the leadership of Ben Berlinger, Emmett Jordan and Jenny Evans who coordinated the day’s activities with WGCD’s support.
Over 400 4th grade students from Windsor/Severence participated in 4-Ever Food, their annual Ag Day at the Windsor Recreation Center. West Greeley helped sponsor the day assisting with bussing costs and we towed the Riparian Trailer to the site for some hands-on learning on a rainy September day. We coordinated multiple mini water sessions. One every 20 minutes learning about our watershed and the water cycle and ways to conserve water from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. The kids actively learned ways they can be better water and soil conservationists.
We engaged with a wide array of ages from elementary through middle school students creating water shed scenes with the Riparian Trailer at the Any Think Library in Bennett on September 29th. The kids couldn’t get enough of the experience and enjoyed the water cycle games, handouts, watershed term sheets, and coloring books we distributed to further expand their learning and to share with their families.