It always starts with a seed of an idea.
Our community is rich with dedicated educators ready to roll up their sleeves and dig in to cultivate the conditions to grow the next generation of STEM innovators. This week educators from Oxnard School District, Rio School District and Hueneme School District gathered with OC STEM Project Acabado at Oxnard College to learn together. These districts are part of the SHELL Program, National Wildlife Federation’s Eco-Schools USA Program. The Schoolyard Habitat Environmental Learning Labs (SHELL) deepens student, community and teacher engagement in hands on STEM learning. They really do get their hands dirty because they will be creating and restoring wildlife habitat on school grounds and creating outdoor classrooms for project-based learning opportunities.
Ventura County has rich natural resources. It is the growing grounds for the avocados, lemons and strawberries you’ll enjoy across the country. Many of the families in our community make their living contributing to the ecosystem of workers and scientists that bring food from the field to the fork. There are so many career opportunities: soil scientists, chemical engineers, horticulturalists and environmental scientists. Many of these well-paid occupations are amongst the fastest growing in our national economy.
Cultivating a school garden grows more than plants. It’s an outdoor lab where math and science is indeed alive. Learners really are citizen scientists and do the work of their future profession by conducting experiments and carefully observing in this outdoor learning lab. Thank you to our educators for cultivating the right conditions to inspire the next generation of STEM professionals right here in the beautiful Oxnard Plains.
Thanks to the forward thinking districts with educator ready to roll up their sleeves.
Thanks to the National Wildlife Federation support to help this seed of an idea to take root.
Thanks to Amgen Foundation for their investment right here at home.