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Better Communities Donates Time and Equipment to Local School

Posted on 12/29/2019 6:00:00 PM by Da-Lite Team

Students at Jefferson Elementary School in Winona Lake, Indiana, have been using a new learning tool this year. Two tower gardens are giving students the chance to learn about biology, math and more.

The garden towers are one way Da-Lite is supporting the school through the Better Communities program. Each site in Legrand is tasked with working with a local school to help provide volunteer hours and assistance with a focus on environmental impacts by helping them transform into more sustainable learning environments.

The sixth-grade students were the first to use the tower gardens, said Josh Wall, STEM instruction coach. They focused on investigating sustainable gardening practices, seed types, light conditions and tower conditions to see how differences can affect the plants. At the end of six weeks, they had a sensory tasting finale and sampled all the different veggies that were grown.

Students posing between two garden towers

“Some of them have never gardened before,” Wall said. “Some have never known where food actually comes from when they go to the grocery store.”

The tower gardens have since moved to the kindergarten room, where students learned measurement and wrote about what they found. Wall said the school’s approach to teaching is to integrate as many areas of learning as possible in a project to learn math, writing and reading.

“The more experiences we can provide for students that bring them real, authentic experiences – these towers provide that,” Wall said. “That’s the authentic, hands on experience we’re going for. Sustainability is important. Green energy and encouraging students to learn that the world operates on energy and how we can do more with a smaller footprint.”

In addition to the garden towers, Da-Lite volunteers also helped students learn about water quality and pollution at the stream.

 Da-Lite volunteers and students in waders are exploring a stream.

The Better Communities program through Legrand supports employee volunteer and philanthropic efforts, focusing on better homes, better schools and better recovery.