Earth Day 2021: Springfield, Mo. high school students learn about ways to take care of the environment


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – “Earth Day is every day.” That was the common theme at Glendale High School Thursday while students worked in the school’s Garden, typically tended to by high school ecology students.

In the garden, students get a hands-on chance to learn about plant life, composting, and ways to take care of the Earth.

Justine Lines, a Health Sciences and Ecology teacher at Glendale, teaches students the fundamentals of understanding how compost is built, basics about planting a seed and all the phases of plant life, as well as about healthy food that they can grow.

We really start with the fundamentals of understanding how compost and soil are built. This year we chose to focus on having some different compost demonstration areas. So we have six different ways to compost from the windrow to the Earth machine to the sub pod, and so my students really have a good understanding of how compost works and then they also just start from the basics with understanding how to plant a seed and we look at all of the phases of plant life so roots, stems, leaves, flowers, fruits, and seeds. 

Justine Lines, Health Sciences and Ecology teacher at Glendale High School

Lines says that every day is Earth Day and they really focus on how to live more sustainably. She also hopes she is making a difference in her student’s life.

After the record low, freezing temperatures the last two nights, students enjoyed the sunshine while uncovering the plants and flowers in the garden.

Glendale Senior Lauren Hamm said this class taught her the importance of taking care of the Earth, not just on Earth Day, but every day.

I think it’s important to learn about composting because with the times everybody’s littering more and more and our planet’s getting more polluted. So composting I think is really cool because it gives a new life to all the plant material and then you could turn it into something good and grow like fruits, vegetables. 

Lauren Hamm, Glendale High School Senior

Hamm also said she believes it is important for people of all ages to learn more about the Earth.

Another Glendale High School Senior, Jack Lindeberg, says this class taught him a lot about composting and planting, but he really enjoys being outside learning and not completely from a textbook.

A compost pile on campus is used for food and plant scraps. Glendale High School senior Grace Pelak said this class has taught more than just learning how to be sustainable with plant life. It has also taught her about recycling, reducing waste, and that this class has had an impact on her.

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