Environmental STEM Adds More Beauty to WTMS

Lucy Murphy, 7th Grader

You might have seen Ms. Kiett and her students in the garden pulling weeds or raking leaves. This is just one of many responsibilities of the Environmental Stem class.  This is one of the many amazing elective classes that are available to the students of WTMS.

Ms. Kiett, previously a 7th grade science teacher, is now the Environmental STEM teacher. Her students go to the garden, greenhouse, and the pond to work on the specific tasks they are assigned that day.  

Environmental STEM and Science are passions of mine and I have been a part of this process since we first introduced a possible second STEM class at WTMS,” Ms. Kiett described. 

A typical class period has Ms. Kiett and her students in the classroom, to review the goals and objectives for the day. Then, they split into teams at the pond, Bernzomatic garden, and greenhouse to complete that day’s tasks. Depending on the project, they might be planting, completing garden maintenance, or working in the greenhouse. 

Some goals she has for the class is to help students experience various plant science concepts through exciting hands-on activities, projects, and challenges. Ms. Kiett also wants students to discover the value of plant production and its impacts on the individual, local, and global economy. 

Every new role comes with its own challenges; however, Ms. Kiett is no stranger to a challenge! “ My strong background in science has been a tremendous support and makes it all the more enjoyable. My students all still have a science class so the topics overlap and scaffold often. However, I am truly passionate about this course and the opportunities that it offers our students.”

In the garden, you can currently find mums, bales of hay, cornstalks, pumpkins, and ornamental cabbage. Ms. Kiett’s students are also growing broccoli, brussels sprouts, green lettuce, and red sail lettuce.

Ms. Kiett states, “In the spring they will plant herbs and flowers that have grown in the greenhouse during the winter.”

Ms. Kiett expects her students to learn teamwork, leadership, goal setting, responsibility, global climate goals, planning, design, and agriculture. Ms. Kiett hopes that all of the classes have the opportunity to visit the garden, pond, and greenhouse to see the amazing things that are being done by her amazing Environmental STEM classes.